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On January 27, 2022, the UN Human Rights Council's Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Working Group will examine Uganda’s human rights record. The UPR process presents an important opportunity to spotlight the human rights situation in the country, and recommend actions that the government of Uganda should take to fulfill its human rights obligations.

In 2021, there were significant developments, some hopeful and some devastating, in the struggle for truth, accountability, and redress in countries around the world. ICTJ experts covered these events in commentaries and feature stories published on our website and in our newsletters. While 2022 is already underway and we at ICTJ are hard at work, we would like to pause a moment to take stock and reflect on the year that was.

New York, January 21, 2022— ICTJ will host an online course, entitled “Prevention and Guarantees of Non-Recurrence: The Role of Transitional Justice,” from March 14 through 18, 2022. Prevention has emerged as a top priority on international policy agendas for sustainable peace and development and global governance, and understanding the preventive capacity of transitional justice is more imperative than ever.

New York, January 18, 2022— The International Center for Transitional Justice (ICTJ) is pleased to announce the “Wide Awake Art Contest,” an open call to Lebanese and Tunisian artists as well as artists living in Lebanon or Tunisia to explore the theme “the Sound of Dissent.” The contest will showcase works by those who are documenting and memorializing their communities’ stories in times of instability, resistance, and change.

On November 25, 2021, The Gambia’s Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) presented its 17-volume final report and recommendations to President Adama Barrow, after multiple delays. The final report includes a record of serious human rights violations committed under Jammeh’s repressive regime and recommendations for pursuing justice. Despite the challenges, steps have already been taken that offer hope that the TRRC’s recommendations will take effect.

New York, December 10, 2021— In contexts such as Afghanistan, Bosnia, Chechnya, Iraq, Somalia, and Syria, hundreds, sometimes thousands, of individuals have crossed national borders to engage in violent conflicts in which serious human rights violations and mass atrocities have been committed...

When reflecting on peace agreements and their implementation, it is tempting to begin by saying that these processes are generally slow and complex. While that may be true in many contexts, it contributes little to the discussion about what has happened in Colombia since the government signed a final peace deal in November 2016 with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC-EP—the oldest and largest guerrilla group in the county—that ostensibly ended 50 years of war.

Six years of unrelenting war in Yemen has created what the United Nations has called the world’s biggest humanitarian crisis. Rubbing salt in the wound, members of the UN Human Rights Council rejected a resolution to renew the mandate of the Group of Eminent International and Regional Experts on Yemen, a body investigating serious human rights violations. The council’s decision is a serious blow to accountability in the country.

The Maryland Lynching Truth and Reconciliation Commission held its first public hearing in Cumberland, Allegany County, Maryland, on October 2, 2021. The event, broadcast live from Emmanuel Episcopal Church, brought together commissioners, panelists, and guests to acknowledge and memorialize the tragic lynching of 18-year-old Robert Hughes (aka William Burns) in Cumberland in 1907. In the coming months, the commission will convene several more of these public hearings in counties across the state of Maryland.

Afghanistan is a tragic example of how a country in transition can dramatically reverse course on the arduous path toward peace and democracy and return to an abyss of violence and repression at breakneck speed. In the span of a few short weeks, the Taliban regained control over the country. When they finally entered Kabul, the internationally backed Afghan government collapsed. Now in charge, the Taliban has lost no time in demonstrating their goal to re-impose the same extremist and oppressive rule, despite initial declarations affirming a commitment to peace and human rights.