Del Ponte hints at departure from diplomacy

Leading lawyer Carla Del Ponte has said for the first time publicly that she intends to quit diplomacy next year.

This content was published on May 25, 2009 - 09:58

The former chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia made the comments on Saturday, as she collected the prestigious Orvieto International Human Rights Prize in Italy.

Del Ponte, who is currently serving as Swiss ambassador to Argentina, said that after her diplomatic mandate runs out in 2010, she would devote herself to the promotion of international human rights.

The lawyer is currently barred by the Swiss foreign ministry from talking about her controversial book on her time prosecuting war criminals, a situation that she described in Orvieto as "weighing" on her.

"The Hunt: Me and War Criminals" has so far been published in Switzerland and Italy. The foreign ministry has said that there were statements in the book, written with New York Times reporter Chuck Sudetic, that were incompatible with Del Ponte's status as an official government representative.

Del Ponte held the tribunal post from 1999-2007.

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