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ICTY chief prosecutor mandate extended to year-end

[JURIST] The United Nations Security Council [official website] has extended [press release] the mandate for International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia Chief Prosecutor Carla Del Ponte [official profile] until December 31, the war crimes tribunal announced Friday. Del Ponte, a former Swiss attorney general, has served two four-year terms as the ICTY chief prosecutor. She was initially expected to step-down in September [JURIST report], but in June she said she would stay until the end of the year while the UN chooses her replacement. It is expected that Serge Brammertz [UN profile], a former federal prosecutor in Belgium and former deputy prosecutor for investigations at the International Criminal Court, will serve as the next ICTY chief prosecutor [JURIST report]. Brammertz currently heads the UN investigation [JURIST news archive] into the February 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri; that probe's mandate expires in December. Del Ponte will serve as Switzerland's ambassador to Argentina [press release; JURIST report] when her term as ICTY prosecutor expires

Del Ponte has repeatedly criticized Serbia for failing to bring to justice several accused war criminals who are believed to be hiding there, including former Bosnian Serb commander Ratko Mladic [ICTY backgrounder; JURIST news archive], former Croatian Serb rebel leader Goran Hadzic [JURIST report], and Bosnian Serb police commander Stojan Zupljanin [ICTY indictment]. On Thursday, Serbia said it will increase efforts [JURIST report] to locate and arrest these war criminals in order to receive a favorable report from Del Ponte when she advises EU officials on a pending pre-membership deal with the country. Reuters has more.

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