§ Lord Hylton
asked Her Majesty's Government:
In relation to Kosovo, under the authority of United Nations Mission in Kosovo—(a) whether the civil and criminal courts are now functioning throughout the country, (b) whether there is a shortage of judges, and, if so, how many are needed, (c) what is the backlog of court cases (if any); and (d) whether adequate prisons are available for sentenced criminals. [HL3466]
§ Baroness Scotland of Asthal
(a) Civil and criminal courts are now functioning throughout Kosovo.
(b) There is still a shortage of judges and prosecutors. UNMIK have recruited over 400 local judges and are seeking to recruit a further four international judges and four international prosecutors. We have offered UNMIK four candidates for prosecutor posts, and expect also to be able to put forward some judges.
(c) A backlog of court cases has accrued in Kosovo due to the need for UNMIK to reform the judicial system in the province. This backlog is currently being addressed.
(d) Prison space in Kosovo is inadequate, with the increasing number of trials resulting in the need for more detention facilities. To date, the UK has given $1 million and the use of an Emergency Engineering Unit to help repair prison facilities.