The Hague, 29 November 2011
On 23 and 24 November 2011, Eurojust hosted the 11th meeting of the European Network of Contact Points in respect of persons responsible for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes (the Network). Since 1 July, Eurojust is hosting the Secretariat of the Network. The Genocide Network Secretariat Coordinator is Mr Matevž Pezdirc.
The meeting, organised by the Polish Presidency of the European Union with the support of Eurojust, was attended by delegations from 17 Member States, and representatives from Canada, Norway, the USA and Switzerland, as well as representatives from the International Criminal Court, the International Criminal tribunal for former Yugoslavia, the International Criminal tribunal for Rwanda, Europol, Eurojust, the European Commission, the General Secretariat of the Council, Human Rights Watch, REDRESS, the International Federation for Human Rights, the Coalition for the International Criminal Court and Amnesty International.
During the 11th meeting of the Network, major agenda items included the functioning of the Secretariat, evaluation of Council Decisions 2002/494/JHA and 2003/335/JHA, initiative for a new international instrument relating to international legal cooperation concerning crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes, and challenges and practical experiences of witness protection at national level in the state of trial and in the state where crimes have been committed. During the discussions, important issues were raised, in particular training for investigators, prosecutors and judges, and the importance of strong national capabilities for investigation and prosecution. Members of the Network also exchanged information on current investigations, ongoing cases and pertinent challenges.
On the agenda for future meetings of the Network are: criteria for prioritisation of cases, incorporation and linkage of facts in cases, immunity for alleged perpetrators, increase of cooperation between immigration and law enforcement authorities, involvement of businesses and legal entities in criminal activities, awareness-raising among migrants, and extraterritorial jurisdiction and international immunity.
At the end of the meeting, the Genocide Network Secretariat expressed satisfaction with the level of cooperation, information sharing and exchange of best practices between the national authorities, as these are the important aspects to ensure the principle of complementarity of the Rome Statute and to combat impunity for the crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. The Secretariat thanked the Polish Presidency for its proactive stance and looks forward to cooperation with the Danish Presidency.
For more information, please contact:
Mr Joannes THUY, Spokesperson - Head of Press & PR Service
EUROJUST, Maanweg 174, 2516 AB, The Hague, the Netherlands
Tel +31 70 412 5508