Interview with Assane Dioma Ndiaye of Senegal, counsel for the Association of Victims of the Crimes of Hissein Habré’s Regime (AVCRHH) Reviewed by Momizat on . Assane Dioma Ndiaye of Senegal, counsel for the Association of Victims of the Crimes of Hissein Habré’s Regime (AVCRHH) Question: Could you describe your profil Assane Dioma Ndiaye of Senegal, counsel for the Association of Victims of the Crimes of Hissein Habré’s Regime (AVCRHH) Question: Could you describe your profil Rating: 0

Interview with Assane Dioma Ndiaye of Senegal, counsel for the Association of Victims of the Crimes of Hissein Habré’s Regime (AVCRHH)

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Assane Dioma Ndiaye of Senegal, counsel for the Association of Victims of the Crimes of Hissein Habré’s Regime (AVCRHH)

Question: Could you describe your profile?

I was called to the bar in 1988. Moreover, I have been a human rights advocate throughout my career, and as such, I have represented victims, particularly in cases involving human rights violations. I am a member of the FIDH. This is how I became involved at the international level. I am also counsel at the International Criminal Court; I work on a number of cases there. At the local level, I have worked on cases involving torture, rape and human rights violations. At the international level, I have been rapporteur for many human rights organisations around Africa. I thus have first-hand experience both as a lawyer and as a human rights advocate, and so when the Hissein Habré case came up, I immediately became involved, first as head of the national human rights organisation and currently as head of Senegal’s human rights league.

Question 2: What does your work as counsel for the civil parties entail?

I work with a team of lawyers which includes Jacqueline Moudeïna, the lead lawyer based in N’Djamena, and her colleagues Delphine (Djiraibe) and Lambi (Soulgan). Our teammates are Counsel Beauthier, based in Belgium, Counsel William Bourdon, based in France, and Counsel Werner, based in Switzerland. I am the team coordinator and I receive all the materials addressed to counsel at my law office here in Dakar; I provide the team with up-to-the-minute updates. I make sure to have up-to-date information, and I go to the Chambers nearly every day for updates, and to consult the case files and also to collect any expert reports that require comments. All this means working very diligently, and so to answer to your question, I am what you could call the lawyer… the go-to guy for the victims’ defence team.

Question 3: What will be the legacy of the EAC?

For the first time, a continent has – through the African Union – decided to establish a regional ad hoc tribunal for the purpose of trying a former head of state. From a political standpoint, this means that to the extent possible, Africa must prosecute its own nationals, but of course without offending the principle of universal jurisdiction. We are part of the world community; we are party to a number of treaties vis-à-vis the International Criminal Court. Belgium also had jurisdiction over case, but Senegal accepted to take it on with the support of the African Union. The point is for Africa to show the whole world that it is capable of prosecuting its nationals in accordance with the [applicable] international principles and standards attaching to the conduct of the proceedings, justice, fairness and due process. If the Extraordinary African Chambers enable Africa to organise the trial in accordance with the above standards, that will go a long way towards ensuring legacy in the realm of international justice, particularly international criminal justice.

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