World Report

Deputy Executive Director and Director of Programs


On September 14, the former Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) publicly apologized to the victims of the kidnappings they perpetrated during the armed conflict. This unprecedented public declaration from a non-state armed group merits reflection from both the perspective of the transitional justice field as a whole and its implications for Colombia.

Head of Office, Colombia


On August 4th, former President Alvaro Uribe surprised the country with a tweet announcing that he would be placed under house arrest for suspected witness tampering and obstruction of justice by the Special Instruction Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice as part of an investigation that has been underway since 2018. According to the court, this decision was made out of a concern for possible obstruction of justice, which appears to be consistent with the ongoing investigation into these same charges. This is undoubtedly an unprecedented situation.

Senior Expert, Programs


It may seem trivial for me to write about why those who continue to mark July 17 as "International Justice Day" should finally stop calling it that. Many human rights groups (including ICTJ), United Nations agencies, and governments have been publicly using that phrase since 2010. It is for victims of massive and systematic human rights violations, including abuses that amount to international crimes under the Rome Statute, that it is important to end the misconception that the phrase encourages.

Head of Office, Brussels and the Hague


In the wake of the mass demonstrations in the United States, activists in European cities similarly took the streets to protest against racism and police violence. In Belgium, mostly young activists have defaced statues of King Leopold II with red paint, insisting public spaces be "decolonized" that commemorate the monarch who personally owned the Congo for more than two decades before relinquishing it to the Belgian government which then controlled it for half a century. Are Belgian and other societies in Europe ready to reckon with the truth of their colonial legacies?

Senior Expert, Programs


In April in the German city of Koblenz, the world’s first war crimes trial of a senior ranking Syrian soldier got under way. The 100-page long indictment included a litany of horrors allegedly perpetrated against political enemies of the Assad Regime. Also in April, an Iraqi went on trial in Frankfurt, accused of participating in an Islamic State-led campaign to exterminate the Yazidi religious minority, including the brutal killing of a 5-year-old girl. It is no surprise that both these trials are taking place in Germany. Germany has become a world leader in the pursuit of international justice through universal jurisdiction. However, the country was not always a champion at combating impunity.

Program Expert, Lebanon


In war-torn Yemen, COVID-19 presents an imminent danger to the country’s 30 million people, 80 percent of whom rely on humanitarian aid to survive. For more than five years, brutal conflict has devastated the country and its economy, infrastructure, and public services including the health care system. By most accounts, the likelihood is high that the disease will spread through Yemen as the number of cases in neighboring countries continues to grow.

Executive Director


The United Nations Security Council has considered transitional justice on several occasions in the past and included many of its components in country-specific resolutions, and also stressed the links between transitional justice and the other items on its thematic agenda including women, peace and security, and children and armed conflict, and it has made explicit reference to transitional justice as a key part of efforts to sustain peace. Yet, on February 13, the Security Council held its first open debate focusing solely on transitional justice.

Head of Program, Libya


On April 4 last year, the commander of the Libyan National Army Khalifa Haftar ordered his troops to advance on Tripoli and “liberate it from terrorists.” Various stakeholders issued a multitude of statements and joint declarations after the assault, all asserting that only a political solution would resolve Libya’s crisis and threatening to hold accountable any faction that escalated the conflict. But in reality, most of the stakeholders have been playing two fields all along: the diplomatic one, in which they continuously reiterate support for political solutions and UN-led initiatives, and then the battlefield.


As subscribers, you enjoy timely commentary on what’s happening in transitional justice around the world written by one of our experts exclusively for our monthly World Report newsletter. In this month’s edition, we bid farewell to 2019 by looking back on the experts’ choices of the past year.

Programs Expert


For over a month now, Lebanese people have been in the streets peacefully calling for an end to corruption, economic disenfranchisement, and government mismanagement, calling instead for accountability and reform of the systems that have allowed these things to occur. The protests are historic for several reasons: their scope and magnitude, as well as the way they have unified a country that has for so long had division baked into nearly every aspect of life, down to its system of governance.