GENEVA, Switzerland, July 1 (UPI) -- A former Canadian Supreme Court justice who also served as a U.N. war crimes prosecutor Thursday took over as U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights.
Louise Arbour succeeds Sergio Vieira de Mello who, while temporarily assigned as Iraq U.N representative, was among the 22 killed in the terrorist truck bombing of U.N. headquarters in Baghdad last August.
The 57-year old Arbour resigned her role on Canada's highest court in Ottawa last month to take up her new position in Geneva, Switzerland.
Prior to serving on the high court she was chief prosecutor of the U.N. International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda from 1996 to 2000. She also served as a vice president for the Canadian Liberties Association.
During her time as the tribunals' prosecutor, Arbour saw indictments brought against former Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic, who remains on trial in The Hague court, among others, for war crimes and crimes against humanity for his part in atrocities committed in Kosovo. It was the first such indictment of a serving head of state.