Amnesty, Human Rights and Political Transitions

Amnesty, Human Rights and Political Transitions

Author: Louise Mallinder

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781847314574

Category: Political Science

Page: 598

View: 978

Amnesty laws are political tools used since ancient times by states wishing to quell dissent, introduce reforms, or achieve peaceful relationships with their enemies. In recent years, they have become contentious due to a perception that they violate international law, particularly the rights of victims, and contribute to further violence. This view is disputed by political negotiators who often argue that amnesty is a necessary price to pay in order to achieve a stable, peaceful, and equitable system of government. This book aims to investigate whether an amnesty necessarily entails a violation of a state's international obligations, or whether an amnesty, accompanied by alternative justice mechanisms, can in fact contribute positively to both peace and justice. This study began by constructing an extensive Amnesty Law Database that contains information on 506 amnesty processes in 130 countries introduced since the Second World War. The database and chapter structure were designed to correspond with the key aspects of an amnesty: why it was introduced, who benefited from its protection, which crimes it covered, and whether it was conditional. In assessing conditional amnesties, related transitional justice processes such as selective prosecutions, truth commissions, community-based justice mechanisms, lustration, and reparations programmes were considered. Subsequently, the jurisprudence relating to amnesty from national courts, international tribunals, and courts in third states was addressed. The information gathered revealed considerable disparity in state practice relating to amnesties, with some aiming to provide victims with a remedy, and others seeking to create complete impunity for perpetrators. To date, few legal trends relating to amnesty laws are emerging, although it appears that amnesties offering blanket, unconditional immunity for state agents have declined. Overall, amnesties have increased in popularity since the 1990s and consequently, rather than trying to dissuade states from using this tool of transitional justice, this book argues that international actors should instead work to limit the more negative forms of amnesty by encouraging states to make them conditional and to introduce complementary programmes to repair the harm and prevent a repetition of the crimes. David Dyzenhaus "This is one of the best accounts in the truth and reconciliation literature I've read and certainly the best piece of work on amnesty I've seen." Diane Orentlicher "Ms Mallinder's ambitious project provides the kind of empirical treatment that those of us who have worked on the issue of amnesties in international law have long awaited. I have no doubt that her book will be a much-valued and widely-cited resource."

Amnesty, Human Rights and Political Transitions

Amnesty, Human Rights and Political Transitions

Author: Louise Mallinder

Publisher:

ISBN: 1472564480

Category: Amnesty

Page: 586

View: 541

Amnesty laws are political tools used since ancient times by states wishing to quell dissent, introduce reforms, or achieve peaceful relationships with their enemies. In recent years, they have become contentious due to a perception that they violate international law, particularly the rights of victims, and contribute to further violence. This view is disputed by political negotiators who often argue that amnesty is a necessary price to pay in order to achieve a stable, peaceful, and equitable system of government. This book aims to investigate whether an amnesty necessarily entails a violati.

Amnesties, Accountability, and Human Rights

Amnesties, Accountability, and Human Rights

Author: Renee Jeffery

Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press

ISBN: 9780812245899

Category: Law

Page: 312

View: 642

For the last thirty years, documented human rights violations have been met with an unprecedented rise in demands for accountability. This trend challenges the use of amnesties which typically foreclose opportunities for criminal prosecutions that some argue are crucial to transitional justice. Recent developments have seen amnesties circumvented, overturned, and resisted by lawyers, states, and judiciaries committed to ending impunity for human rights violations. Yet, despite this global movement, the use of amnesties since the 1970s has not declined. Amnesties, Accountability, and Human Rights examines why and how amnesties persist in the face of mounting pressure to prosecute the perpetrators of human rights violations. Drawing on more than 700 amnesties instituted between 1970 and 2005, Renée Jeffery maps out significant trends in the use of amnesty and offers a historical account of how both the use and the perception of amnesty has changed. As mechanisms to facilitate transitions to democracy, to reconcile divided societies, or to end violent conflicts, amnesties have been adapted to suit the competing demands of contemporary postconflict politics and international accountability norms. Through the history of one evolving political instrument, Amnesties, Accountability, and Human Rights sheds light on the changing thought, practice, and goals of human rights discourse generally.

The Limits of Transition: The South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission 20 Years on

The Limits of Transition: The South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission 20 Years on

Author: Mia Swart

Publisher: BRILL

ISBN: 9789004339569

Category: Political Science

Page: 324

View: 929

The Limits of Transition: The South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission 20 Years on is an interdisciplinary collection that celebrates and critiques the work of the TRC after 20 years. The authors consider whether the TRC has continued relevance for South Africa. The book further explores the legacy of the ‘unfinished business’ of the TRC.

An Introduction to Transitional Justice

An Introduction to Transitional Justice

Author: Olivera Simić

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781000096286

Category: Law

Page: 369

View: 112

The Second Edition of An Introduction to Transitional Justice provides a comprehensive overview of transitional justice judicial and non-judicial measures implemented by societies to redress legacies of massive human rights abuse. Written by some of the leading experts in the field, it takes a broad, interdisciplinary approach to the subject, addressing the dominant transitional justice mechanisms as well as key themes and challenges faced by scholars and practitioners. Using a wide historic and geographic range of case studies to illustrate key concepts and debates, and featuring discussion questions and suggestions for further reading, this is an essential introduction to the subject for students.

The Rights of Victims in Criminal Justice Proceedings for Serious Human Rights Violations

The Rights of Victims in Criminal Justice Proceedings for Serious Human Rights Violations

Author: Juan Carlos Ochoa S.

Publisher: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers

ISBN: 9789004212169

Category: Law

Page: 336

View: 896

In The Rights of Victims in Criminal Justice Proceedings for Serious Human Rights Violations, Juan Carlos Ochoa offers a systematic analysis of international and comparative domestic law on the position of the victim in the prosecution of these infringements, points to the deficiencies of the current state of customary international law, and proposes specific reforms.

The Right to Truth in International Human Rights Law

The Right to Truth in International Human Rights Law

Author: Julia Kertesz

Publisher: Editora Dialética

ISBN: 9786559567164

Category: Law

Page: 336

View: 688

The present book addresses the right to truth in the field of international human rights law. The objective is to verify the outlines of this right that make it unique, and which justify its own (disputable) existence in the human rights scenario as a legally binding norm. Departing from a historical perspective of the emergence of this right in International Law, the intent is to analyze the multiple debates that have marked the development of the right to truth throughout the past decades. It is explored, therefore, how the a priori abstract notion of truth became a right and the strict relation this has with the social mobilizations of victims of gross violations of human rights. To accomplish this, the book spans across the struggle, in particular, of the relatives of disappeared victims during the 1970's and 1980's when the dictatorships reigned in Latin America. It follows on the expansion of the right to truth during what has been known as the fight against impunity, until it reaches the main human rights courts. To finalize, it discusses the inclusion of the right to truth in the International Convention on the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance and the measures more commonly used to realize such right. In the book, it is concluded that the right to truth carries a singularity that is crucial for the protection of victims of gross human rights violations.

Comparing Transitions to Democracy. Law and Justice in South America and Europe

Comparing Transitions to Democracy. Law and Justice in South America and Europe

Author: Cristiano Paixão

Publisher: Springer Nature

ISBN: 9783030675028

Category: Law

Page: 323

View: 949

This present book examines some of the key features of the interplay between legal history, authoritarian rule and political transitions in Brazil and other countries from the end of 20th Century until today. This book casts light on these aspects of the role of law and legal actors/institutions. In the context of transition from authoritarian rule to democratic state, Brazil has produced a significant literature on the challenges and shortcomings of the transition, but little attention has been given to the role of law and legal actors/institutions. Different approaches focus on the legal mechanisms, discourses and practices used by the military regime and by the players involved in the political transition process in Brazil. A comparative perspective that takes into account different political transitions – and their legal consequences – in Europe and Latin America complements the analysis. Part 1 (4 essays) discusses some of the central issues of political transition and legal history in contemporary Brazil, focusing on the time of the transition (and its effects on transitional justice) with different perspectives, from racial and gender issues to constitutional reform and police repression. Part 2 (3 essays) brings the comparative studies on South American experiences. Part 3 (4 essays) analyses different cases of transition to democracy in Chile, Portugal, Spain and Italy. Part 4 (3 essays) proposes a historiographical and methodological approach, considering the politics of time involved in the interplay between political transitions and legal history.

Prosecuting Serious Human Rights Violations

Prosecuting Serious Human Rights Violations

Author: Anja Seibert-Fohr

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780199569328

Category: History

Page: 326

View: 871

Criminal punishment is increasingly regarded as a necessary element of human rights protection. There is a growing conviction at the international level that those responsible for the most serious crimes should not go unpunished. Though there is a wealth of legal writing on international criminal law, the question why and to what extent criminal prosecution is a necessary means of human rights protection has hardly been addressed in a comprehensive analysis. This book is the first to examine the duty to prosecute serious human rights violations. It does so by exploring the concepts of impunity and amnesties, and by exposing flaws in criminal proceedings. With its survey of the relevant human rights instruments and jurisprudence, Prosecuting Serious Human Rights Violations is placed at the interface of international criminal law and international human rights. The book analyzes the rapidly growing body of human rights case law, dealing with criminalization, prosecution and punishment of serious human rights violations. It identifies and critically examines the standards for the conduct of criminal proceedings developed by the European and Inter-American Courts of Human Rights and the UN Human Rights Committee, providing a unique tool of reference for scholars and practitioners working in this area of law. As the analysis reveals shortcomings in the current conceptualization of the prosecution of human rights violations, the author develops a solid theoretical framework for future jurisprudence. By evaluating the relationship between criminal law and the protection of human rights, the book elucidates not only the potential but also the limits of the role human rights law can play in the emerging concept of international criminal justice. The underlying rationale for prosecuting serious human rights violations is also relevant for post-conflict situations, in which it is often argued that criminal punishment threatens peace and reconciliation. The question how to deal with post-conflict justice under international law is a continuing theme throughout the book.

The European Court of Human Rights in the Post-Cold War Era

The European Court of Human Rights in the Post-Cold War Era

Author: James A. Sweeney

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781136159428

Category: Law

Page: 264

View: 795

The European Court of Human Rights in the Post-Cold War Era: Universality in Transition examines transitional justice from the perspective of its impact on the universality of human rights, taking the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights as its detailed case study. The problem is twofold: there are questions about differences in human rights standards between transitional and non-transitional situations, and about differences between transitions. The European Court has been a vital part of European democratic consolidation and integration for over half a century, setting meaningful standards and offering legal remedies to the individually repressed, the politically vulnerable, and the socially excluded. After their emancipation from Soviet influence in the 1990s, and with membership of the European Union in mind for many, the new democracies of Central and Eastern Europe flocked to the Convention system. The voluminous jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights can now give us some clear information about how an international human rights law regime can interact with transitional justice. The jurisprudence is divided between those cases concerning the human rights implications of explicitly transitional policies (such as lustration), and those that involve impacts upon specific democratic rights during the transition. The book presents a close examination of claims by states that transitional policies and priorities require a level of deference from the Strasbourg institutions. The book proposes that states’ claims for leeway from international human rights supervisory mechanisms during times of transition can be characterised not as arguments for cultural relativism, but for ‘transitional relativism’.