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contribution 13 - GUINDO Saïdou

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Sentence and detention


transtlated version

Thank you, Chair. My name is Saidou Guindo. I am the commanding office of the United Nations Development Detention Facilities since 1999 at the ICTR. Therefore, I manage the the detention facility which holds all the persons presumed to be guilty or those who are prosecuted by the ICTR. Therefore, I enforce the law.

Well, I did it on purpose. I was just trying to tease the lawyers. And these are presume persons presumed innocent, not guilty.

That said, we started from nothing, ex ^nilo, at the ICTR to build a detention facility conforming to the expectations and standards of the United Nations and the standards of the international community in respect of the handling of persons deprived of freedoms. We have a specific regime and we also have minimum standards of the United Nations. That was a challenge to address.

So we started gradually. It wasn’t easy. You know, old habits die hard, especially the habits that obtained before I came. And having to deal with lawyers coming from all the continent with different legal systems, those daunting challenges had to be addressed, respecting the rights of the detainees had to be ensured across the board as enshrined in the guidelines applicable to persons in detention under the ICTR.

We were able to develop or introduce a system wherein detention conditions are consistent with the minimum standards. Others would say those are the maximum standards. Sometimes we’ve heard people say that our detention facility is akin to a three star hotel. But to us, there is nothing, nothing can replace freedom. And freedom is priceless. So we have some privileges which we have introduced in the facility. We have cells which are 5 5 metres large and 22 metres wide no. And in the cells we are ensured that the detainees can have access to their basic needs and can sleep in decent conditions.

They also have access to healthcare. We have also developed a healthcare system. We have doctors who visit or who consult often. Often they come to visit. We have a something room which is like a room where patients are monitored before they are evacuated to a health facility. And our detainees have access to all care, drugs, medication, and sometimes they are, if acquitted, are broad and I would say this is thanks to the authorities of the ICTR.

And let me say that the registrar is keeping a keen eye on that. So we have come up with an environment where people feel free. They can undertake physical education. They can wash it. You know, they can play sports spots and all of this have a price.

They also have access to their lawyers. There are special rooms where they can speak with their lawyers. Obviously, this is regulated. There is security. And some lawyers are intransigent and we are also intransigent and that raises security issues in the detention facility of an international criminal Tribunal.

Today we are proud we take pride in saying that we are lifting our model from Arusha to elsewhere, especially in countries which have concluded agreements with the ICTR in respect of the enforcement of sentences. And thanks to the clear clairvoyance of the registrar, we have been able to build a UNDF in Mali and one in Benin. The least list is long. And we are exporting our experience far and wide. And even in Europe, I am a member of the United States pent tree system or agency, and I believe that model, our detention facility model is the pride of the ICTR.

Let me make a correction in respect of what counsel said a while ago. After Kambanda, there were pleas of guilty.

There were two other persons whose names have slipped the interpreter’s mind.

Thank you.


Very well. I believe Aicha Condé had raised her hand to speak.