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The role of victim participation in international criminal proceedings, whether in international, hybrid, or national courts, has long been a matter of public deliberation among criminal justice practitioners and human rights activists. In the aftermath of mass atrocities and repression...

As part of its ongoing efforts to support Syrian civil society organizations seeking to end enforced disappearances in Syria, ICTJ organized a visit to the United States for members of two prominent family associations: Families for Freedom and the Caesar Families Association. The trip,...

For many years now, the International Center for Transitional Justice and other organizations have supported young activists and artists as they harness the power of art, culture, and new media to advance truth, justice, reform, and redress, not only where they live, but across borders ...

December 4, 1931, is a night that lives on in the minds of Black residents in Salisbury, Maryland, a small town along the state’s Eastern Shore. That cold winter night, a mob of more than 2,000 racist residents hung 18-year-old Matthew “Buddie” Williams from a tree in the town’s courtho...

As plans to build a massive Wegmans distribution center forge ahead, residents of the historic Black community of Brown Grove, Virginia, demand acknowledgment and redress.

Transitional justice can contribute to prevention of violence and abuse, particularly if it addresses common drivers such as exclusion and associated grievances. It can facilitate the inclusion of social groups that have suffered human rights violations and marginalization, and promote ...

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...

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. W...

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 E...

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 memori...

Expectations for advancing much-needed justice and dismantling state and non-state criminal networks that persistently violate human rights have been dashed over the past three years in Mexico. Violence and impunity have increased. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador's campaign promis...

As part of its ongoing support of the Committee of the Families of the Kidnapped and Disappeared in Lebanon, ICTJ organized a three-day virtual workshop on transitional justice for university students on July 12-14, 2021. The students all served as volunteers on a project to establish a...

Alonso Ojeda Awad and Medardo Correa joined Colombia’s notorious leftist guerrilla group the National Liberation Army (ELN) in their youth. After fighting with the group for several years, they and a handful of other ELN members demobilized voluntarily in the 1980’s. But it was not unti...

On July 13, 2021, the Gambia’s Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) presented an award to ICTJ for its sustained support of the commission and its commitment to the country’s transitional justice process. The award comes as the TRRC concludes its work and prepares to ...

On June 25, President of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte publicly proposed arming civilian supporters in his war on drugs. His statement comes barely a week after the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) outgoing prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, announced her request to open an investigation...

“No peace without justice” is a chant that filled the streets of the United States last year following the murder George Floyd by police in May 2020. This same chant has animated protest movements and social and political upheaval in many countries around the world. We at ICTJ know from...

While Armenia may rightfully seek acknowledgment from its neighbors of the genocide and other egregious violations, for its part, it must have the courage to reckon with its own recent past in the 30 years since achieving statehood, which includes war crimes, systematic corruption, and ...

After several years hiatus, ICTJ has recently resumed work in Afghanistan. Last month, ICTJ’s communication intern, Edward Mercado-Gumbs, sat down with expert and cohead of ICTJ’s program in Afghanistan Reem El Gantri to discuss ICTJ’s latest engagement in the country, as well as the pr...

This year marks ICTJ’s 20th anniversary. For the past two decades, the organization has engaged in more than 50 countries, providing technical assistance and other critical support to victims, civil society, governments, and other stakeholders. Since its beginnings, ICTJ has served as a...

A significant portion of Colombian society has been indifferent to the pain of those who lived through the war in the flesh. Some have even denied the existence of an internal armed conflict. This is why it is necessary for us to recount our early and recent history. A new, more compreh...

With a special court that has yet to open a trial and a truth commission that is not up and running, international attention on victims in the Central African Republic is waning. Since 2015, the unfulfilled promises of justice made to these victims have failed to address their daily rea...

On March 31, 2021, the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Court upheld the Trial Chamber I’s acquittal of former Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo and Charles Blé Goudé of all charges relating to crimes against humanity they allegedly committed during Côte d’Ivoire’s 2010-2011...

2020 was a year of unforeseen hardships throughout the world. We may wish to write off last year as a loss and move forward. However, looking back on it as we do in this 2020 Year in Review, in which we highlight our most read content, we can find and take heart in important victories a...

On February 4, 2021, the International Criminal Court issued its judgment in the case of the Prosecutor v Dominic Ongwen. The ICC found Ongwen guilty of 61 counts of crimes against humanity and war crimes committed in Northern Uganda between July 1, 2002, and December 31, 2005. The verd...

On February 4, 2021, the prominent activist, intellectual, writer, and filmmaker Lokman Slim joined the long list of victims of violence and impunity in Lebanon. The courageous human rights and political activist was found shot to death in his car in southern Lebanon.

In Venezuela, there is now an absence of representative democracy and a vacuum of public trust in politicians. However, this situation presents an opportunity for other actors and other approaches, so far disparaged by hardliners on both sides. Civil society organizations, which have ea...

For many victims of human rights violations and international crimes around the world, the prospects of holding perpetrators to account, especially high-level individuals, have long seemed farfetched, given current political and legal hurdles and the limitations of international crimina...

In what UN Women describes as the “shadow pandemic,” rates of violence against women have soared since the public health and economic crises brought about by COVID-19. With stay-at-home orders in place in countries around the world, women are more susceptible than ever to domestic viole...

Over the last 15 years, the Ugandan government has implemented a series of recovery and reconstruction programs in Northern Uganda to address the social and economic devastation caused by the two-decade armed conflict in the region and set it on the path to sustainable peace. While thes...

The purpose of Resolution 1325 is to highlight the particular way in which women and girls suffer in situations of conflict, as well as the critical role they play in peacebuilding. To commemorate the 20-year anniversary of the resolution, ICTJ would like celebrate the life and work of ...

The political crisis in Venezuela has reached a breaking point. The upcoming parliamentary elections scheduled for December 6 threaten to deprive the opposition of its institutional foothold, on which the legitimacy of its demand to establish an interim government rests. Moreover, obser...

Following the recent closure of ICTJ's office in Côte d’Ivoire, we caught up with Head of the Office Mohamed Suma and Senior Expert Cristián Correa to reflect on ICTJ’s work in the country and with victims, women, and youth, as well as the reasons why ICTJ has chosen to scale down its a...

As UN member states convene virtually this week for the annual General Assembly, they will likely focus on a narrow list of agenda items, topped by issues related to the deadly coronavirus pandemic and a global economic downturn. For this reason, ICTJ would like to recall the vital impo...

On August 18, nearly two decades after Lebanon’s former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri was brutally assassinated in a car bombing, the Special Tribunal for Lebanon delivered a long-awaited conviction. The judgment found Salim Ayyash guilty of conspiracy to commit a terrorist act, committin...

During this global pandemic, how do organizations such as ICTJ continue with their victim-centered and context-specific work, when their staff members cannot meet face to face with partners bilaterally, much less at organized convenings? The answer to these questions involves both rethi...

The role of police in society is to protect residents and enforce the rule of law. As a public institution, and particularly one whose function includes the state-sanctioned use of force, the effectiveness of the police depends on its integrity and legitimacy. When the police abuses its...

It happened again. George Floyd’s name is now added to the tragic list—already far too long—of other people of color whose lives have been cut short as a direct result of the United States’ long history of racism and white supremacy. We at ICTJ are outraged by the cruel and senseless mu...

Sparing almost no corner of the world from its wrath, the COVID-19 pandemic has now spread to every country. In an effort to slow the contagion, governments in most countries have been taking drastic measures requiring all residents other than essential workers to confine themselves in ...

For the past few months, ICTJ, along with our partners at the Center on International Cooperation at New York University, has been working on a comprehensive new policy paper on the situation of the many thousands of Syrians detained somewhere in the country’s vast network of prisons. T...

Today, we are facing a global public health crisis of unprecedented proportions. Only time will tell the devastating toll that COVID-19 will exact on human life. The breakneck speed at which the virus is spreading does not give us reason for optimism in the near future. We at ICTJ fully...

ICTJ held a two-day workshop on transitional justice for a group of university students in Beirut on February 14 and 15 as part of its ongoing support to the Committee of the Families of the Kidnapped and Disappeared in Lebanon. The students are currently serving as volunteers on a proj...

This week, the International Criminal Court heard closing arguments in the trial of Dominic Ongwen, a top commander of the Lord’s Resistance Army in Northern Uganda. Among the 70 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity he faces are 19 counts of sexual and gender-based crimes, i...

Youth activists in Tunisia have played a vital role in keeping corruption at the center of public debate since the country's revolution in 2011. Through decentralized, nationwide protest movements, young Tunisians have been calling for measures that root out systems of endemic corruptio...

Eminent human rights defender José Zalaquett passed away on February 15. “Pepe,” as he was known by many, helped pioneer the field of transitional justice and inspired countless human rights defenders around the globe.

On December 12, ICTJ’s head of office for Colombia María Camila Moreno received the Alfonso López Michelsen Award for her dedicated work to advance peace and uphold international human rights and humanitarian law.

Lebanon’s ongoing “October Revolution” represents the largest decentralized, anti-government protest the country has seen at least since the end of the civil war in 1990. The demonstrations have brought thousands of Lebanese to the streets to condemn widespread corruption among the poli...

In countries emerging from violent conflict and repression around the world, prosecutors are facing significant challenges and pressures when seeking to investigate and prosecute serious crimes, such as torture, extrajudicial killings, and enforced disappearance. To reflect on these cha...

In 1998, Colombian filmmaker Sergio Cabrera released “Time Out,” a fictional comedy in which guerrilla members and soldiers — usually mortal enemies — call a momentary truce to watch the national soccer team play in the qualifiers for the 1994 World Cup. Twenty years later, former comba...

Youth activists and traditional leaders from the city of Duékoué, in western Côte d’Ivoire, gathered on October 15 to discuss how best to strengthen social cohesion and prevent future conflict. The city and surrounding region were among the areas most affected by the violence that broke...