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UN Radio: War Crimes Prosecutor Will Stay On

UN Radio: UN War Crimes Tribunal Prosecutor Will Stay On

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  • Prosecutor For UN War Crimes Tribunal Says She Will Stay On

    The Security Council today held consultations on the criminal tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, to consider a proposal by Secretary-General Kofi Annan to have separate prosecutors for the tribunals. The current prosecutor, Carla Del Ponte briefed the Council on the work of the courts and later said she would continue to serve as the prosecutor for the tribunal for the former Yugoslavia even if her current role becomes split.

    "I am very, very attached to what we have done for ICTY and ICTR, but if the Security Council decides to split I hope to stay on ICTY as prosecutor. Of course, we have, as you know, important trials ongoing. And it is my responsibility to conduct and to finish these trials."

    Meanwhile, the Prosecutor to the Supreme Court of Rwanda, Gerald Gahima who spoke to the press earlier, said his government has concerns about the tribunal for Rwanda. He said the court is very slow and ineffective.

    "We have concerns about the failure of the ICTR to indict many genocide suspects who are at large, and yet at the same time the ICTR has decided to conclude its investigations by the end of next year without making any provisions as to what will be done to bring those other suspects who are at large to justice."

    The Security Council is expected to decide on whether to have separate prosecutors for the tribunals.

    WFP Warns That 500,000 People Face Starvation in DR-Congo The World Food Programme has warned that half a million displaced people are facing starvation in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The UN food agency says that in the town of Bunia, alone, there are 25,000 new arrivals but it is running out of food stocks. WFP Spokeswoman, Christiane Berthiaume says the situation is very worrying.

    "We have launched an appeal of $38 million in June to help at least half a million people. And we have received so far only two million dollars. This is very little and our stocks in the area are really dwindling down."

    Ms. Bethiaume says this is the second time in two months that the agency has raised the alarm about the food crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

    UNHCR Says Iris Recognition Tests Reduce Afghan Refugee Identification Fraud

    The UN refugee agency has said that its iris recognition tests to verify the identity of Afghan refugees in Pakistan has reduced the number of people who try to be repatriated twice. Some Afghans have gone back to Pakistan, so that they could collect assistance packages. UNHCR spokesman Kris Janowski says the tests have worked.

    "The cases of cheating have gone down drastically. Out of 130,000 who have gone through the test there is only a few hundred who actually tried to sneak in to sort of, repatriate or recycle twice."

    UNHCR Spokesman Kris Janowski.

    IOM Evacuates Nationals of Burkina Faso from Cote d'Ivoire

    The International Organization for Migration has continued to evacuate third country nationals from western Cote d'Ivoire. The agency says it is organizing the evacuation of up to 1,000 people, mainly from Burkina Faso, who are leaving the transit centres at a rate of two per week. The spokeswoman for the IOM, Niurka Pineiro says some of these people have been forced to leave their belongings behind.

    "They are migrant workers that were working on the cocoa plantations and the rubber plantations. And it's disturbing because it sounds like it's local people who want them off the land. These people don't want to leave but they say they have no choice but go home and leave everything behind." UN Marks International Day of World's Indigenous People The United Nations has been marking today as the International Day of the World's Indigenous People. Secretary-General Kofi Annan observed that indigenous people are a rich and integral part of the human family - a family that is a tapestry of enormous beauty and diversity. But Mr. Annan warned that indigenous peoples still faced threats to their lives and the destruction of their belief systems, cultures and languages.

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