Friday, December 10, 2010

Herman von Hebel appointed Registrar of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon.

Leidschendam, 10 December 2010: The Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-Moon, has appointed Herman von Hebel to the post of Registrar of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon. Mr von Hebel, is a Dutch national with decades of experience in international law at three tribunals including the STL, as well as for the Government of the Netherlands.

“My appointment comes at a very important time for the STL”, said Herman von Hebel. “The tribunal is moving from a predominantly investigative phase towards judicial proceedings, and during this period the Registry will be critical to ensure the smooth running of the court.”

The Registrar is in effect the Chief Executive of the tribunal and is responsible for all aspects of its administration including the budget, fundraising, relations with states and court management. Mr von Hebel’s extensive brief also includes oversight of the victim participation unit, witness protection and detention facilities.

His appointment has been warmly welcomed by the other principals of the STL. "Herman von Hebel has served international criminal justice for many years with competence and independence”, said the President of the Court, Judge Antonio Cassese. “I am sure that in his position he will continue to show great professionalism and integrity.”

Mr von Hebel was previously the acting Registrar for the STL, the Registrar of the Special Court for Sierra Leone and a senior legal officer for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. He was also instrumental in the negotiations of the Rome Statute, which led to the establishment of the International Criminal Court.

“Mr von Hebel's appointment comes as a well-deserved recognition of his efforts to consolidate the work of the Tribunal since its very early days”, said the Prosecutor Daniel A. Bellemare. “I am confident that our shared experience and commitment will be most valuable to further advance the Tribunal’s challenging mission.”

Those sentiments were shared by the Head of the STL’s Defence Office, M. Francois Roux. “It is a good thing for our Tribunal”, said M. Roux. “I am happy to be able to continue working together with him to ensure that the STL remains a model of impartial and fair justice in which the Defence is able to wholly fulfill its mandate.”

The Special Tribunal for Lebanon was created by the United Nations Security Council, at the request of the Government of Lebanon in 2007. The STL started its work on March 1st 2009 and there are currently 333 members of staff from 62 countries.