The rules for the Defense: "a step backward"
Since opening in July 2006, the Extraordinary Chambers, tasked with trying former Khmer Rouge leaders, has been paralyzed by the failure to adopt internal, procedural rules. Now, at last, the court is likely to have its rules in place by the end of May. On April 28, after five months of deadlock, the Cambodian Bar Association removed the last major obstacle by agreeing to lower its registration fees for foreign lawyers from $4,900 to $500. Rupert Skilbeck, Chief of the Defense Support Section, talks with IJT about issues of concern for the defense.
Controversy between the president and judges
On April 25, a federal appellate court in Buenos Aires ruled that the presidential pardons granted to former junta members years ago were unconstitutional. This ruling opens the door for Rafael Videla, currently under house arrest, to be put in prison and for the transfer of Emilio Massera, declared senile, to a military hospital. Mostly, it comes at a time when the pace of trials for crimes against humanity has created a rift between President Nestor Kirchner and the country's top criminal court, the Court of Cassation.
South Africa, peace mediator above all
South Africa has unmatched economic and moral power on the African continent, where the International Criminal Court (ICC) has focused its first prosecutions. The government's attitudes towards the ICC are shaped by its anti-colonial struggle against apartheid and by its own choice of a Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
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