At a one-day seminar organized by the Special Court Outreach Section, the Registrar Herman Von Hebel said the issue of the protection of women and children were very important in the work of the court.
Speaking on the theme ‘operations of the Special Court and the impact on the right of women and children’ the Registrar further stated that the most important aspect of the work of the court was to see those who committed crimes on women and children be brought to book. On the work of the court, Mr Von Hebel said the court was created at the request of the government, adding that the court was only limited to those who bear the greatest responsibility.
“This is the reason why the court has four sets of cases which are the RUF, AFRC, CDF and the case against Charles Taylor,” he went on.
“In the case of the AFRC, sentences have been handed down and the accused have appealed. The Appeals Chamber is different from the Trial Chamber as they don’t spend a lot of time on cases and they don’t need witnesses to prove their case. So the Appeal will last for about 5-6 months and so we are expecting the first Appeal judgment by the end of December or early January,” the Registrar said. The second accused in the CDF trial Moinina Fofanah will not appeal, the registrar said for Alieu Kondewa has filed an appeal and judgment will be handed down shortly.
On the RUF case, Registrar Hebel disclosed that the case was extensive as many charges were faced by the accused, and that it was an important case but by July the judges might hand down judgment. The Charles Taylor case, he continued, would last about 12-18 months “that is not a long time because if compared to other cases here and other tribunals.