President Graciela Gatti Santana

International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals

President of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals since 1 July 2022.

Judge Gatti Santana has served as a Judge at both national and international levels for over 30 years.

On 27 June 2022, the United Nations Secretary-General appointed Judge Gatti Santana as the new President of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (Mechanism) for a term of two years, effective 1 July 2022.

Judge Gatti Santana was initially appointed as a Judge of the Mechanism in December 2011, taking oath in May 2012. In that capacity, she has been called to exercise functions for the Mechanism in a variety of judicial matters. In particular, Judge Gatti Santana served as one of the Judges of the Appeals Chamber in the case of Prosecutor v. Radovan Karadžić. Until 26 August 2022, she was also a Judge of the Trial Chamber hearing the case of Prosecutor v. Félicien Kabuga.

From 2016 until becoming President of the Mechanism, Judge Gatti Santana served as a judicial member of the Mechanism’s Rules Committee and, as such, was actively involved in the development of proposed amendments to the Rules of Procedure and Evidence for the Mechanism. Since becoming President in July 2022, she has been an ex officio member of the Rules Committee.

In her home country of Uruguay, having practiced as a Public Notary and as a Lawyer from 1987 to 1992, Judge Gatti Santana joined the Uruguayan judiciary in July 1992 when she served as a Justice of Peace at the Department of Montevideo. Since December 1994, she was assigned to work as a Judge before different courts and in various locations of Uruguay.

Between 1994 and 2003, Judge Gatti Santana served as a Judge in Paso de los Toros, Carmelo, Maldonado and Montevideo, during which time she dealt with civil, criminal, family and labour matters. In 2006, she was assigned to work as a Criminal Judge of the 7th Circuit Court and, in 2008, as a Judge for Organised Crime at the 1st Circuit Court. In 2012, Judge Gatti Santana was promoted as an Appeals Judge to the Civil Court of the 4th Circuit Court and, from February 2016 to June 2022, she served as a Judge of the Court of Appeals in Criminal Matters.

Between 2016 and 2017, Judge Gatti Santana participated in the work to implement the new Uruguayan Code of Criminal Procedure. She acted as the Coordinator of the Coordinating Group of the Judiciary for the Implementation of the New Code of Criminal Procedure and as a representative of the judiciary within the specialised inter-institutional Commission established for its implementation.

In 2019, Judge Gatti Santana represented the Uruguayan judiciary and provided assistance before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights during its 174th session on the thematic hearing “Challenges for the search of the truth and justice in Uruguay”.

From March 2021 until June 2022, Judge Gatti Santana was the President of the Association of Magistrates of Uruguay.

Judge Gatti Santana has also been teaching as a Professor at the University of Montevideo and at the Universidad de la Empresa, Uruguay. In addition, she is a Professor at the Uruguayan judiciary school (“Centro de Estudios Judiciales del Uruguay”).

Judge Gatti Santana graduated as a Public Notary in 1987 and as a Lawyer in 1988 from the University of the Republic of Uruguay (“UDELAR”). In 2008, she studied at the University of Alicante, Spain, where she obtained a postgraduate course in Legal Argumentation. Judge Gatti Santana subsequently completed a Masters in Law at the University of Montevideo, Uruguay.

In addition to her native Spanish, Judge Gatti Santana is fluent in both English and French.