Certainly not. Not in our case, and I could proceed if your Honours so desire.
What we do know is that several months ago a circumstance arose at the detention centre where the Dutch security services who are responsible for transporting detainees attempted to move both Mr Taylor and another detainee in what could be termed as the same convoy; that is, they would take Mr Taylor down from his cell to a waiting vehicle, have him placed in the vehicle, he would be handcuffed upon being taken downstairs, and his ability to use the telephone would be discontinued, and he would have to sit in the vehicle for sometimes up to half an hour while they would go upstairs and bring a second detainee and place the second detainee in another vehicle and attempt to move both detainees simultaneously to the Courthouse.
Mr Taylor and the other detainees lodged complaints to the ICC chief of detention. Assurances were given to them that this mode of transportation would no longer be employed because of the discomfort it posed to the detainees being handcuffed in a van and sitting there for thirty minutes while another detainee was brought from his cell to another vehicle.
This morning the Dutch security services attempted to repeat the same mode of transportation. They took Mr Taylor down. For those not in Holland the temperature is about perhaps 30 degrees Farenheit. They attempted to place him in this vehicle in handcuffs, and he would have had to have sat in the vehicle for at least half an hour in the cold, and Mr Taylor had refused and additional arrangements had to be made.
Now, the disconcerting part of all of this is that the time at which Mr Taylor was taken downstairs was at about 8.30 this morning. He had no means of communication with counsel. No member of the Registry, as far as I am aware of, were contacted by the security services to indicate that this was the state of affairs, and so even when we were here in Court assembled at about 9.35, we had no idea where our client was. We didn't know if he was on the way here; we just knew there were difficulties occasioned by transportation issues, and so that's very disconcerting to all of us.
I should make one additional point that is not on the record, but this touches upon Mr Taylor's efforts to be here and present at these proceedings.
Bearing that in mind and asking him at age 61 to sit in a van for thirty minutes in the cold, handcuffed while another detainee is being brought from upstairs, all to get him to the courthouse we find is unacceptable. So I don't think that the delay could in any way be attributed to the conduct of our client.
Assurances were given by the relevant detention centre personnel. They breached those assurances. After several months of the same practice of transporting the detainees separately to the courthouse, they reinstituted the problematic mode of transportation today and as a consequence we are now at 10.25 past the hour and almost an hour late for the commencement of the court session. In sum and substance that's what we know.