Sasida Whenever the Prosecutor questions a suspect, the questioning shall be audio-recorded or video-recorded, in accordance with the following procedure:. B At the time of being taken into custody an accused shall be informed immediately, in a language he understands, of the charges against him and of the fact that he is being transferred to the Tribunal and, upon his transfer, the indictment and a statement of the rights of the accused shall be read to him and he shall be cautioned in such a language. After the presentation of all the evidence, the Prosecutor may present an ictt argument, to which the defence may reply. Sub-rule 1 provides that as soon as an appeal has been filed under rule or as soon as leave to appeal has been granted under rulethe Registrar shall transmit to the Appeals Kcty the record of the proceedings of the Chamber that made the decision that is the subject of the appeal. C A Chamber shall, whenever necessary, control the manner of questioning to avoid any harassment or intimidation.

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Open in new tab While rich in detail, this framework does not capture how the criteria came to be introduced and utilized, and whether their inclusion is sufficiently backed by current scientific knowledge, which we discuss in the following sections, focusing on witness objectivity and competence.

This belief in the ability to see truthfulness based on the body language or the manner of responding to questions is highly prevalent at the ICCTs, and is frequently cited as the main reason for a witness to be heard in person. The presence of the accused is another stressor, which, combined with cross-examination practices employed at the ICCTs, could seriously hamper perceived credibility of vulnerable witnesses.

Reasons for Being Un- Truthful: Individual Circumstances of the Witness Due to the nature and scope of the conflicts preceding international criminal prosecutions, it is nearly inevitable that fact witnesses will have some degree of connection to the crimes: they may have been personally victimized, have family members or members of the extended community fallen victim to the crimes, lost important religious or cultural monuments, or their livelihood.

Besides direct victimization, the highly politicized context of conflicts, often pitting ethnic, national or religious groups against each other is conducive to enduring group loyalties and struggles for power or revenge, which remain after the armed violence has ended. This de-individualized view of the influence of conflict experiences is manifest in the initial rulings of the ICTY and the ICTR, where defence made broad allegations of bias on the part of all the witnesses for the prosecution.

Different Chambers have approached potentially biased testimony with varying degrees of caution and transparency of their decision-making. While the general expectation is that such witnesses would lie to avoid self-incrimination, the judges have also identified the motivation to protect the armed forces reputation , their colleagues, or even careers. The general credibility and reliability criteria e. However, while the ICC has also relied on insider-type testimony extensively, 65 the specific assessment criteria, as used in the other tribunals, are not established yet.

That is understandable to an extent. The ICC, due to its much lower case-load and higher geographic dispersion of the cases, has heard fewer insiders of the most problematic profile: e. Appropriately considering the factors relevant to how well a witness can observe, retain, and retell the information can be strongly aided by current scientific recommendations. The ICTR judgments that followed repeatedly referred to his testimony.

Here, culture was ignored until the cases concerning Kosovo. In Limaj et al. While a lot of attention was given to their age assessments and the potentially damaging role of intermediaries, the judges did not explore the possibility that the witnesses were uneasy for reasons beyond their understanding.

Trauma and PTSD Impact on Memory Unsurprisingly, the judges at the tribunals repeatedly noted that many witnesses before them were likely traumatized by the events they were to provide the testimony on. Such assessments were especially important for the evaluation of identification evidence, where high-stress conditions could render the testimony unsafe to rely on see Section 5. A number of psychologists and psychiatrists provided their opinions on whether, and how, trauma could affect the ability of a witness to remember and communicate the past.

Such a stance allows for significant flexibility in deciding how to use the indicia of trauma. Such an approach partially reflects the current state of understanding of the relationship between trauma and memory. In a nutshell, trauma-exposed individuals show significantly less memory specificity. The conditions surrounding the testimonies at the ICCTs are ripe for misremembering: witnesses often testify about potentially traumatizing events that took place years ago, are interviewed multiple times and sometimes appear at multiple trials , and the high-profile of the events increases the risk of post-crime information and contamination.

In these circumstances the judges acknowledge that some inconsistencies between the various pre-trial statements and the oral testimony may be caused by different approaches by investigators, distinct questions being asked, or witnesses simply remembering more details at a later time, and seem not to take issue with it unless inconsistencies pertain to central details in the testimony.

The common approach is to treat inconsistencies between the testimony and non-judicial e.


Rules of Procedure and Evidence






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