In December 2011 the ICTY Registry launched a dedicated web feature (within the ICTY website) to provide a better understanding of the role and functions of the future Residual Mechanism of the Tribunal. The Residual Mechanism of the ICTY is meant to continue the important work which needs to be carried out once the Tribunal completes its mandate. This ad hoc body established by Security Council Resolution 1966 (2010) will be responsible for continuing the ‘jurisdiction, rights and obligations and essential functions’ and maintaining the Tribunal’s legacy.
The new feature at the ICTY website describes the timeline for setting up the two branches of the Mechanism, which will cover functions inherited from the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and the ICTY respectively. The feature also explains in detail the limited number of essential functions currently carried out by the ICTY that the Mechanism will eventually take over. Those functions are appeals against ICTY judgements, retrial of persons indicted by the ICTY, trial for contempt of the Tribunal and false testimony, proceedings for review of final judgement, protection of witnesses, supervision of enforcement of sentences, assistance to national courts, and preservation and management of ICTY archives.
The UN Security Council has requested the ICTY and the ICTR to take ‘all possible measures to expeditiously complete all their remaining work no later than 31 December 2014’. The Mechanism itself will begin operating on 1 July 2013, meaning that during the initial period of its work, there will be a temporal overlap with the ICTY, which will continue to complete its work on any ongoing cases.
The feature is available in English, French and Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian, and forms part of the ICTY’s ongoing efforts to maintain transparency and inform the public about the work of the Tribunal.
* This post is based on the ICTY Registry Press Release of 16 December 2011 available here.