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Wednesday, 4 May 1994
Page: 160


Senator SPINDLER (11.02 a.m.) —During the second reading debate on 2 March 1994 I indicated that the Democrats supported the main thrust of the International War Crimes Tribunal Bill. I say again that we welcome the attempt to give effect to the obligations that were imposed by the United Nations Security Council when it adopted resolution 827 in 1993. The setting up of this tribunal sends a very clear message to all in the former state of Yugoslavia that they must immediately stop violations of international humanitarian law or face the consequences.

  However, notwithstanding the extraordinary circumstances that have brought this legislation into existence, we believe that a balance must be struck between the need to ensure that procedures are in place for people to be surrendered promptly to the tribunal and other assistance rendered to it, and the need to have in place the safeguards that a nation such as ours would expect to have in its judicial process. The amendments that I will move today are in line with that objective.

  The amendment to clause 12 will give a person who has been arrested on a warrant the right to know what it is that he or she has been arrested for. I will move an amendment so as to require that when a person is arrested pursuant to a warrant, he or she must be handed a notice setting out the tribunal offence and the conduct that is alleged to constitute the tribunal offence to which the warrant relates. I move:

1.Clause 12, page 7, subclause (1), lines 22 to 24, omit the subclause, substitute the following subclause:

"(1)A person who is arrested under a warrant must, as soon as practicable:

    (a)be given a written notice that:

      (i)specifies the Tribunal offence in respect of which the warrant was issued; and

      (ii)describes the conduct that is alleged to constitute that offence; and

    (b)be brought before a magistrate in the State or Territory in which the person is arrested.".