Mr. Stephen Mathias provided the CAHDI with an overview of current issues being addressed by the UN Office of Legal Affairs. Mr. Mathias addressed the need, when establishing international criminal tribunals, to consider issues such as residual functions, long-term costs, and governance. He also addressed the recently created mechanisms for the collection of evidence, and drew attention to the UN policy that UN investigative mechanisms mandated to share information with national courts and tribunals should do so only with jurisdictions that respect international human rights law, and only for use in criminal proceedings in which capital punishment will not be imposed or carried out. Mr. Mathias elaborated on challenges related to the “protection of civilians” in UN peacekeeping operations; requests by the General Assembly for advisory opinions of the International Court of Justice; and the UN System’s approach to the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation.
Finally he made a reference to the United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction.