EULEX hosts workshop for Kosovo Prosecutors on interview technique skills for war crimes witnesses and victims

20 April 2018

EULEX has facilitated a two-day workshop for Kosovo Prosecutors on interview technique skills for war crimes witnesses and victims with a focus on sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) cases in armed conflict.

The workshop was delivered by Luana Scarcella, EULEX Legal Officer, and Gianfranco Gallo, international legal expert.

The aim was to provide participants with a greater knowledge and understanding of the specific skills needed in interviewing, witnesses and victims of war crimes cases especially those of a SGBV nature.

“EULEX is pleased to support Kosovo Prosecutors and enhance their knowledge and experience in handling war crime cases. This workshop has provided a great opportunity to develop their interview and technique skills which will further help with SGBV cases in armed conflict” said Luana Scarcella, EULEX Legal Officer.

Over the course of the two days, the workshop focused on the participant’s knowledge in interviewing skills; including planning and preparation, relationship building and managing information. The training included familiarizing participants on how to approach barriers to communication such as difficult and challenging behavior and techniques for understanding verbal and non-verbal communication.

During the training the participants took part in an analysis of war crime cases, looking at the Kosovo and international law legislation in order to have a greater understanding of the main legal issues that prosecutors face. Participants then took part in a session on interview planning and exercises based on case studies where they were given a chance to put into practice their knowledge and skills gained during the workshop.

The final part of the training focused on interviewing female victims of SGBV in armed conflict and gave the opportunity for participants to feedback their thoughts on the two days.

“Taking experience from prosecutors who have participated in war crime trials is the best way for us to gain knowledge. The learning experience for professional techniques of questioning and extracting evidence from war victims will be extremely useful. A good testimony is essential for a successful indictment and a fair trial” said Arbresha Shala, Prosecutor at the Basic Prosecution in Pristina and participant of the training.

Overall the workshop is part of a wider objective to enhance the long-term capacity of Kosovo Prosecutors to plan and interview witnesses and victims of war crime cases.