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Cablegate: Meeting of Usun Legal Adviser with Ictr President

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUCNDT #1106 3422253
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 082253Z DEC 09
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7775
INFO RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
RUEHDR/AMEMBASSY DAR ES SALAAM 0340
RUEHLGB/AMEMBASSY KIGALI 0365
RUEHTC/AMEMBASSY THE HAGUE 9183

UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 001106

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL KJUS UNSC XA RW
SUBJECT: MEETING OF USUN LEGAL ADVISER WITH ICTR PRESIDENT
BYRON

1. (U) SUMMMARY: On Friday, December 4, USUN Legal
Adviser Mary McLeod (filling in for Ambassador DiCarlo) met
with International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR)
President Byron. Byron addressed three issues: witness
protection, ICTR fugitive Felicien Kabuga, and the deadline
for 11bis referrals. END SUMMARY.

2. (U) Byron noted that in his statement to the Security
Council the previous day he had invited reconsideration of
witness protection issues, the need for which is
disproportionate to the workload and cost involved. He is
skeptical, in particular, that many if any witnesses will no
longer want protection. He suggested a modification of
rules, downgrading to an administrative decision situations
in which national judicial authorities want access to a
protected witness or to protected testimony. Also, Byron
noted that ICTR experts are still studying the issue of
general declassification of information but that in his
opinion general policies don't work. Byron and USUN/L
briefly discussed similarities and differences to the
International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
(ICTY) procedures.

3. (U) Byron noted ICTR's support for the intensification
of pressure regarding Kabuga, asked to what extent such
pressure could be increased, and discussed problems getting
relevant information from Kenya. Byron stated that a formal
resort to the Security Council was a last option, but that
the possibility might force Kenya to act.

4. (U) As the Tribunal comes to a close, the ICTR faces
the problem of coordinating referrals under Rule 11bis.
Byron identified timing as the primary problem with 11bis
referrals and has suggested that a deadline of
January 2010 (or March at the latest) be imposed. He noted
that once proceedings are filed, four months must be
allocated for a decision and perhaps six months for review.
Also, even if the decisions require referral to take place,
further action by the Tribunal may be necessary. Byron noted
that US Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues, Stephen
Rapp, mentioned during their meeting on December 3 the
possibility of creating a hybrid tribunal using ICTR judges.
Byron stated that this proposal would find support within
ICTR ranks. USUN/L clarified that the State Department does
not yet have a final position on the possibility of a hybrid
tribunal. (COMMENT: Byron seemed to be thinking of using
hybrid tribunals in the short term, before the residual
mechanism is established. END COMMENT)
RICE

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