King to attend Yugoslavia Tribunal closing ceremony

On Thursday 21 December His Majesty the King will attend the closing ceremony of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in the Hall of Knights in The Hague. Dignitaries including Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres and foreign minister Halbe Zijlstra will speak at the ceremony.

The ICTY was established by the United Nations Security Council in 1993 during the conflict in the Balkans. It has a mandate to prosecute and try individuals suspected of committing international crimes in the former Yugoslavia after 1991. The tribunal has jurisdiction over four types of crimes: genocide, crimes against humanity, violations of international humanitarian law and serious violations of the Geneva Conventions of 1949.

The ICTY has now completed its most important cases, which focus
ed mainly on the individuals who bore the greatest responsibility for the atrocities, including the region’s most senior political and military leaders. Since the tribunal’s establishment, 161 people have been tried, 90 of whom have been convicted. According to the ICTY, no indicted persons are still at large. Its remaining functions will be transferred to the United Nations Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (MICT).