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Tribunal: Sept ‘07

IWPR report on future of ICTY archives proves timely as official study begins a few weeks after its publication.
In September, IWPR gathered the views of regional and international experts in an in-depth report on the future of the Hague tribunal’s archive.

The timing of the feature on the vast store of documentation - which was compiled by our staff in London, Zagreb, Belgrade and Sarajevo - proved to be impeccable.

A few weeks after its publication, a key study which will focus on the future of the archives of both the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, ICTY, and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, ICTR, began in The Hague.

Chaired by former ICTY and ICTR Prosecutor, Justice Richard Goldstone, the expert committee undertaking the study will provide both tribunals with an independent analysis of how best to ensure future accessibility of the archives and will review different locations for housing the materials.

The IWPR article looked at the many possible options for storing these documents once the tribunal finishes its work in 2010. Local and international experts interviewed suggested a number of places as future hosts of the archive - from Bosnia, Serbia and Croatia to United States and The Netherlands.

The piece included an interview with Eric Ketelaar, Professor of Archival Science at the University of Amsterdam, who will take part in the study to consider the future of the ICTY’s archive. He told IWPR that accessibility and security were important factors to be considered.

“What must be solved and is a huge problem before 2010 is how access should be regulated. I think it’s essential that all parties in the region have access to the same material. Reconciliation can only start if there is a possibility of a shared past,” he said.

In response to the piece, IWPR received a letter from Bosnian liaison officer with the Hague tribunal, Amir Ahmic, who proposed his own solution.

“I think a regional centre, which would be strictly under the UN jurisdiction, should be set up in Bosnia,” he said.

Throughout September, our articles were republished by Bosnia Daily - Bosnia’s largest electronic newspaper in the English language - whose target audience is made up of diplomats, local and foreign policy makers and the Bosnian diaspora.

“IWPR articles are of very high quality and well written. What we appreciate most in your reports is that they are - in addition to being very informative - a great example of independent, objective journalism,” said Bosnia Daily’s senior editor Rasid Krupalija.

“Issues related to the Hague tribunal are of great importance for Bosnia and the whole region, and we think our readers can benefit a lot from your reports. That is the main reason we regularly republish your articles,” he said.

“On this occasion, editors of Bosnia Daily would like to praise your team for providing timely and highly objective reports every week.”

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