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Fabien
Dubuet

Representative to the United Nations, Médecins Sans Frontières

Lawyer specialized in International Humanitarian Law, Fabien Dubuet has worked for MSF since 1999.

 

1985 Oct.-Nov MSF publicly accuses the Ethiopian government of using humanitarian aid and logistics to carry out forced displacement of the population Expulsion of MSF from Ethiopia
1986   MSF mounts an explanatory campaign to persuade other NGOs and international organisations present in Ethiopia to join it in opposing misappropriation of aid in Ethiopia
1989   Investigation by MSF-Holland to establish medical and scientific evidence of the use of gas against the Kurdish population of Iraq at Halabja
1990   The EEC (subsequently the European Union) and the UN take over management of the conflict in the former Yugoslavia and decide to respond through militarised humanitarian assistance
1991 20 October Former Yugoslavia: MSF denounces an attack on a convoy evacuating patients from the hospital in Vukovar
  19 November Fall of the town of Vukovar and massacre of patients in the hospital
1992 May MSF denounces the international community’s “crime of indifference” concerning the famine in Somalia
  7 December MSF denounces ethnic cleansing in the former Yugoslavia and publishes a report entitled “La purification ethnique dans la région de Kozarac (Bosnie Herzégovine)”
  December Initiation of “Operation Restore Hope”, consisting in the deployment of a United Nations military force in Somalia
1993 22 February Creation of the ad hoc International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY)
  16 April Creation by the UN of the Srebrenica “safe area” in eastern Bosnia-Herzegovina
  17 June Bombing of the MSF/AICF headquarters in Mogadishu by United Nations forces (UNOSOM), killing one person, seriously wounding another and lightly wounding seven more
  20 July MSF files a complaint with the UN Security Council concerning violations of humanitarian law committed by UN forces in Somalia in relation to the 17 June 1993 attack on MSF headquarters
1994 6 April Beginning of the genocide of Rwandan Tutsi and the massacres of Rwandan Hutu opposed to the genocide
  7 April After the killing of ten Belgian Blue Helmets in Rwanda, the United Nations military force in Rwanda (UNAMIR) is reduced to 250 soldiers
  April-May Teams from the various MSF sections throughout Rwanda witness widespread selective massacres
  28 April The president of the Belgian section of MSF, on his return from Rwanda, publishes an opinion column describing and denouncing the genocide
  17 May Rwanda: the UN Security Council passes Resolution 918 authorising the establishment of a humanitarian safe area protected by soldiers under an international mandate and authorising these soldiers to use offensive force
  24 May In an extraordinary session of the UN Commission for Human Rights on Rwanda, held in Geneva, the co-ordinator of the MSF-Belgium mission presents his personal testimony on the acts of genocide committed in the town of Butare and in the hospital where the MSF team was working
  June MSF drafts a report on the genocide in the various provinces of Rwanda, based on all the testimony of MSF staff members present in the field at the time. A version from which the names were deleted is made public. The version of the report containing names is send to the Special Rapporteur appointed by the UN Commission of Human Rights to determine whether genocide had occurred in Rwanda
  18 June MSF-France launches a press campaign calling for UN intervention to stop this crime under the title “On n’arrête pas un génocide avec des médecins”
  July MSF and other humanitarian organisations begin to report problems related to the criminalisation of the Rwandan refugee camps in Tanzania and Zaire
  September MSF sends the version of its report on the Rwanda genocide that contains names to the Expert Group appointed by the UN Security Council to investigate whether acts of genocide had been committed in Rwanda
  8 November The UN Security Council creates the ad hoc International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR)
  November MSF sends the version of its report on the Rwanda genocide that contains names to the ICTR
  December Public announcement of the withdrawal of MSF-France from all Rwandan refugee camps in Zaire and Tanzannia
1995 April Rwanda: the MSF team witnesses the attack on the Kibeho camp by the Rwandan army and the large-scale massacres of displaced people committed during the attack
  27 April Rwanda: at a press conference held on the ruins of the Kibeho camp, the head of the Rwandan government denies that these massacres had taken place, stating that there had been only a few deaths and that these were due to the fact that the people had resisted the directives of the army
  8 May The Rwandan government and the UN create an independent international commission to investigate the Kibeho massacre
  20 May The report of the independent international commission created by the Rwandan government and the UN on the events in Kibeho speaks of a loss of control rather than a massacre and gives no estimate of the number of victims
  25 May MSF publishes its own report on the Kibeho massacres
  July Former Yugoslavia: the fall of the Srebrenica safe area to Bosnian Serb forces is followed by the deportation of 40,000 people and the execution of 7,000 others
  August An ICTY investigator contacts MSF to find out whether the organisation possesses any documents on the fall of Srebrenica other than those which had already been made public
  August MSF publishes a report on the fall of the Srebrenica enclave based on the testimony of its personnel on site. MSF report: “Les témoignages bosniaques sur la fin de Srebrenica”
  September Former Yugoslavia: the Dutch ministry of defence conducts an internal military investigation on the circumstances of the fall of Srebrenica and the behaviour of the Dutch battalion of Blue Helmets present on the ground
  Aug.-Nov. Withdrawal of the Belgian and Dutch sections of MSF from the Rwandan refugee camps in Zaire
  November The executive directors of the various MSF sections adopt a joint policy on co-operation with the ad hoc International Criminal Tribunals on the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda
  6 December The Rwandan government expels 39 NGOs from Rwanda, including MSF-France and MSF-Switzerland
1996 February MSF publishes a second, more complete report on the fall of Srebrenica: “Srebrenica Hospital Personnel and Local Staff: eyewitness account of the evacuation from Srebrenica and the fate of missing colleagues”
  November Former Yugoslavia: the Dutch government commissions a more detailed investigation of the fall of Srebrenica from the Dutch institute for war documentation (the NIOD, an organisation that conducts historical research, mainly on the second world war)
  November The Rwandan army launches an attack on the camps of Rwandan refugees in Zaire
  November Former Yugoslavia: the head of the ICTY’s investigations into the massacres in the “safe area” of Srebrenica informs MSF that he has found the body of an MSF employee
  December MSF denounces the massacres of Rwandan refugees in Zaire
1997 16-17 January Hearing of Rony Zacharias, MSF head of mission, as a background witness in the inaugural session of the ad hoc International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
  July The UN Secretary-General appoints a Special Rapporteur for Zaire (DRC) to investigate the massacres of Rwandan refugees
  December The Belgian Senate publishes the report of a national investigation on the role and behaviour of the Belgian Blue Helmets during the genocide in Rwanda
1998 January Rwanda: the investigation of the Belgian Senate results in publication of a report and paves the way for a formal apology by Belgium to the Rwandan people for having abandoned them at the time of the genocide
  2 March A coalition of French civil society organisations, including MSF, demands a parliamentary investigation of the role played by France in Rwanda from 1990 to 1994
  3 March The Chairman of the Defence Committee of the French National Assembly, Paul Quilès, passes an emergency measure to create a commission “on the military operations conducted by France, other countries and the UN in Rwanda from 1990 to 1994”
  May Publication by MSF of a report on violence against civilians in Sierra Leone
  2 June Jean-Hervé Bradol, President of MSF and Programme Officer for Rwanda in 1994, is heard by the French parliamentary commission on Rwanda
  June-July MSF joins the International Coalition of NGOs for the International Criminal Court (ICC)
  17 July Signature of the Rome Treaty establishing the International Criminal Court (ICC) to prosecute the perpetrators of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes
  30 November The UN General Assembly calls for “a full report including an evaluation of the events that have occurred in the former Yugoslavia since the creation of the safe area in Srebrenica”
  15 December Publication of the report of the French parliamentary commission on the role played by France in Rwanda: “Enquête sur la tragédie rwandaise (1990-1994)”
  23 December MSF holds the vice-presidency of the French Coalition for the ICC, which is responsible for monitoring the process of adapting French law, particularly as regards war crimes
  December Former Yugoslavia: an MSF expatriate staff member present on site at the time of the fall of Srebrenica is asked to testify by ICTY investigators
1999 Spring 1999 Kosovo: armed intervention by NATO against Serbia
  26 March Creation of an internal UN investigation commission on the genocide in Rwanda in 1994
  29 April MSF publishes its report “Kosovo: accounts of a deportation”
  May At the initiative of the new UN Secretary-General (Kofi Annan, head of the Peacekeeping Operations Department at the time of the genocide in Rwanda), the United Nations initiates an internal investigation to analyse the causes of the failure of its political and military involvement in Rwanda in 1994
  June Publication of an MSF report: “Sierra Leone, mutilations : un mois d’activité a l’hôpital Connaught de Freetown”
  June Humanitarian organisations enter Kosovo at the same time as the returning inhabitants and NATO troops. MSF provides forms for use in contacting the ICTY to Kosovar families who want them
  27 July Ruling of the ICTY in the Simic case, limiting the obligation to testify for humanitarian personnel
  30 August Referendum on self-determination in East Timor organised by the UN
  September The UN authorises an international military coalition headed by Australia to intervene in East Timor
  October The UN Security Council decides to deploy a major peacekeeping operation in Sierra Leone (the UNAMSIL), whose mission includes protection of civilians
  November East Timor: MSF sends a report on the serious violence occurring in the refugee camps of West Timor to the international investigative commission set up by the United Nations
  November Publication of the Dutch ministry of defence’s investigation report (initiated in September 1995) on the fall of Srebrenica
  15 November Publication of the report of the UN investigation on the fall of Srebrenica
  15 December Publication of the UN investigation report on Rwanda
2000 May Sierra Leone: following the deployment of international troops in the areas containing diamond deposits, the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) kills seven Blue Helmets and takes nearly 500 hostage
  7 July Publication of the Organisation of African Unity report: “Rwanda, the inevitable genocide”
  13 July Opinion column in Le Monde by the new president of MSF, Jean-Hervé Bradol, on the need for a French parliamentary investigation of the circumstances of the fall of the Bosnian enclave of Srebrenica in July 1995
  14 August Sierra Leone: UN Security Council Resolution 1315 calls for the establishment of a special mixed tribunal to try war crimes committed in the country
  9 November Creation of a French parliamentary commission on the Srebrenica massacre
  9 January Kenny Gluck, expatriate staff member of MSF-Holland, is taken hostage in Chechnya, in the North Caucasus
  March East Timor: MSF sends its report on violence against refugees in the camps of West Timor to the Attorney General of Indonesia and to the mixed judicial mechanisms established jointly by the new East Timor government and the UN
  21 August Publication by the UN of the Brahimi report (so-called after the name of its author) on the reform of UN peacekeeping operations
  8 November Talisman case: a group of Sudanese victims living in Sudan and in the United States, supported by several organisations (Presbyterian Church of Sudan, Nuer Community Development Services in the USA), files a class-action suit in the US courts for compensation of damages sustained as a result of the oil consortium Talisman’s operations in southern Sudan.
The victims’ suit is based on the reports of various human rights organisations (including Human Rights Watch and Christian Aid)
  22 November Publication of the report of the French parliamentary commission on the fall of Srebrenica
Publication by MSF of a briefing paper for journalists entitled “Mission d’enquête parlementaire (française) sur Srebrenica : argumentation, lacunes et contradictions des auditions”
  16 January The government of Sierra Leone and the UN sign an agreement establishing a Special Court for Sierra Leone
  10 April Netherlands: Publication of the report of the Dutch research institute NIOD on the fall of Srebrenica in the former Yugoslavia
2002 16 April Netherlands: Following the publication of NIOD’s report on the fall of the Srebrenica safe area, the entire government of Prime Minister Wim Kok and the chief of staff of the armed forces resign
  June Netherlands: the Dutch parliament decides to create a commission to investigate the fall of the Srebrenica enclave
  1 July Entry into force of the Rome Treaty establishing the International Criminal Court
  12 August Arjan Erkel, a Dutch expatriate employee of MSF-Switzerland, is taken hostage in Dagestan, in the North Caucasus
  11 December Ruling of the ICTY in the Randal case, concerning protection of war correspondents’ sources before the international courts
2003 27 January Publication of the investigation report of the Dutch parliament on the fall of Srebrenica
  February Sierra Leone: the Special Court contacts MSF field teams to request information, documents and testimony to facilitate the investigation and the holding of trials
  March Sierra Leone: the international working group established to formulate MSF’s policy on co-operation with the ICC is requested by the operations directors to formulate a coordinated MSF response to the requests of the Sierra Leone Special Court
  24 April Adoption of the document “MSF and the Sierra Leone Special Court” by the executive directors of the MSF sections
  June Establishment of the ICC in The Hague, after appointment of the judges, prosecutor and registrar
  July ICC Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo declares that his office has already received nearly 500 complaints and that some of them relate to crimes that indeed come under the Court’s jurisdiction
  December Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni refers the crimes committed by the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) to the ICC
2004 January An MSF volunteer expresses the wish to testify before the Special Court for Sierra Leone
  13 January Talisman case: requisition order from the judge of the federal court in Manhattan (USA), ordering MSF to provide the defence attorneys for the oil consortium Talisman with internal documents and names of MSF personnel in regard to southern Sudan
  17 March Meeting between MSF and the office of the ICC Prosecutor to obtain assurances as to the limits of MSF’s co-operation with the ICC
  March The DRC refers crimes committed in certain parts of the country to the ICC
  3 April The policy limiting MSF’s co-operation with the Sierra Leone Special Court is adopted by the operational centres and then negotiated with the Court
  8 April Liberation of Arjan Erkel, an expatriate staff member taken hostage in Dagestan (North Caucasus) in 12 August 2002, in return for payment of a ransom
  19 April The DRC’s referral of certain crimes to the ICC is made public
  23 June The ICC Prosecutor announces the official launch of the Court’s first investigation, concerning the DRC
  2 July DRC: letter from the Attorney General’s office of South Kivu to MSF concerning the requisition of patient files relating to sexual violence
  15 July DRC: reply from MSF to the medical inspector of the Attorney General’s office of the province of South Kivu explaining why MSF refuses to hand over patient files relating to sexual violence
  27 July The Dutch government brings a suit against the Swiss section of MSF for reimbursement of the ransom paid for the liberation of Arjan Erkel, who was held hostage in Dagestan for 20 months in 2002-2004
  29 July The ICC Prosecutor announces the official launch of an ICC investigation on the situation in northern Uganda
  13 September The UN Secretary-General signs a co-operation agreement between the ICC and all UN organisations and agencies
  13 September Talisman case: reply of MSF and other organisations refusing to obey the requisition order on the grounds of the human rights organisations’ need to protect sources and the humanitarian organisations’ need for independence
  30 September The High Commissioner for Human Rights, Louise Arbour, and the special advisor to the UN Secretary-General for the prevention of genocide present to the Security Council the report of an investigation on the violence in Darfur
  October Former Yugoslavia: an MSF volunteer decides to testify for the defence before the TPIY in the trial of Nacer Oric, the former Bosnian military leader in the defence of Srebrenica. The attorney defending Nacer Oric contacts other members of MSF to obtain their testimony
  16 December Talisman case: letter from the law firm Simpson Thacher and Barlett, confirming that the requisition order concerning the provision of MSF documents has been withdrawn by both the oil consortium and the plaintiffs. Thus, Talisman will be unable to use these internal MSF documents for its defence, but neither will the plaintiffs be able to use them to prove their case
2004 January Referral to the ICC by the Central African Republic
2005 February Uganda: the office of the ICC Prosecutor declares that warrants will be issued during the year for the arrest of LRA leaders
  31 March The UN Security Council passes Resolution 1593 referring the situation in Darfur to the ICC, over-riding the opposition of Sudan
  March Uganda: MSF field teams are requested to meet ICC investigators in Uganda
  8 March Publication of report by MSF Holland on rapes in Darfour
  April Uganda: MSF reaffirms its concern for making a distinction between humanitarian activity and judicial activity on the ground, addressing its views to the ICC Prosecutor’s office in The Hague and to certain OCHA officials in New York and Geneva
  April Sudan: the UN Secretary-General sends the ICC a secret list compiled by the UN investigative commission containing the names of Sudanese officials involved in the violence in Darfur
  May Sierra Leone: an MSF volunteer testifies on an individual basis and anonymously before the Special Court in two trials (one against the RUF, the other against the AFRC)
  2 June Ituri (DRC): an expatriate and a local staff member are kidnapped and held hostage in Ituri province in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Internal discussion by MSF on the possibility and the utility of testifying on these events before the ICC.
MSF’s decision as an organisation is to refrain from any testimony on these cases before the ICC.
The expatriate makes the same choice, after internal discussion and discussion with the ICC on the implications for relief operations and local staff
  6 June The ICC Prosecutor announces the launch of an investigation on Darfur
  June The Prosecutor confirms that two warrants are in preparation, for the arrest of the leader of the LRA, Joseph Kony, and one of his deputies, Vincent Otti
  June Sudan: indictment and arrest of the head of mission and field manager of MSF-Holland for “espionage, publication of false reports and compromising national security” following MSF-Holland’s publication of the report on rapes committed in Darfur. The Sudanese authorities request MSF’s patient files; MSF refuses.
  12 September Talisman case: the federal court in Manhattan (USA) dismisses the claim of the group of Sudanese victims against the oil consortium Talisman for failure to provide conclusive evidence that Talisman was responsible for the prejudice sustained
2006 15 March Erkel case: The judge of the court in Geneva (Switzerland) rules in favour of MSF in a case opposing the Dutch government and the Swiss section of MSF, concerning the payment of the ransom for the liberation of the hostage kidnapped in Dagestan in 2002 and freed in 2004
2007 4 May Erkel case: The Dutch government appeals the ruling of the judge in Geneva (Switzerland) in the case opposing the Dutch government and the Swiss section of MSF, concerning the payment of the ransom for the liberation of the hostage kidnapped in Dagestan in 2002 and freed in 2004