National Prosecutions

Head of Program, Côte d’Ivoire


On the eve of Côte d'Ivoire’s 58th independence anniversary, in a dubious attempt at “social cohesion,” President Alassane Ouattara granted amnesty to 800 persons accused or convicted of crimes against the state during the post-election crisis of 2010-2011. Former First Lady Simone Gbagbo — who had been tried for undermining state security — and other high-ranking officials associated with former President Laurent Gbagbo’s party, the Ivorian Popular Front (FPI), were among those released. The lapses in accountability and acknowledgment in Cote d’Ivoire have emboldened perpetrators and made it impossible for many victims to move on with their lives. The challenges of transitional justice processes present clear obstacles to the sustainable peace that the people of Cote d’Ivoire have been working toward.


Last week, a court in Cairo sentenced 75 people to death, including top leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood, in a mass trial. The political wing of the organization has urged the international community to take measures to halt their execution and investigate the “improper” trial. In addition to those sentenced to death, nearly 600 others received prison terms for inciting violence and organizing protests against the military coup that overthrew Egypt’s first freely elected President, Mohammed Morsi.


Thousands of Tamil families in northern Sri Lanka lost contact with loved ones in the final stretch of the brutal civil war that ended nearly 10 years ago and have yet to hear from them. The Sinhalese-dominated government denies that they are holding people in detention centers or secret prisons, and also dismisses as fabrication that those who disappeared were killed in extrajudicial killings.


Last week, judges at the International Criminal Court (ICC) decided that the court has jurisdiction over alleged deportations of Rohingya people from Myanmar to Bangladesh. While Myanmar is not a signatory to the ICC, Bangladesh is, and, since an element of the crime (crossing the border) occurred in Bangladesh, the court has ruled it has jurisdiction for this crime. The ruling paves the way for the court to further investigate alleged crimes against humanity committed by Myanmar’s military against the Rohingya and other ethnic minorities.


Yesterday, American National Security Adviser John Bolton called the International Criminal Court (ICC) illegitimate and threatened officials there with sanctions and criminal prosecution over an ICC investigation into alleged American war crimes in Afghanistan. He also announced the closure of the Palestine Liberation Organization office in Washington, DC, because of its calls for an ICC inquiry into Israel.

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In the last few years, hundreds of thousands of Chinese Uighur Muslims have been taken to internment camps where they are forced into a high-pressure indoctrination program, including forced lectures, singing hymns praising the Chinese Communist Party, and writing “self-criticism essays.” Beijing has been long unnerved by the Uighur minority and, since 2014, the government has escalated a crackdown against Islamic practice and orchestrated an unforgiving drive to turn ethnic Uighurs and other Muslim minorities into loyal citizens and supporters of the party.

Director, Reparative Justice Program


In July, ICTJ’s Program Director Anna Myriam Roccatello and Senior Transitional Justice Expert Ruben Carranza traveled to Yerevan to meet with civil society organizations, human rights and anti-corruption activists, and key government officials, to join them in exploring strategies for change.


This report examines attacks on schools in Syria from multiple angles: from the legal implications of such attacks to the everyday impact on students, teachers, families, and society at large. It is the product of Save Syrian Schools, a collaborative project led by 10 Syrian civil society organizations and ICTJ that demands an end to the killing of Syrian children and justice for the bombing of schools.

Date published: 
Mon, 09/10/2018 - 08:41
Communications Associate, Editor


A new report on attacks on schools in Syria harnesses documentation to call attention to atrocities and advance storytelling, truth seeking, acknowledgment. It is the product of Save Syrian Schools, a collaborative project led by 10 Syrian civil society organizations and the ICTJ that demands an end to the killing of Syrian children and justice for the bombing of schools.  


Colombia’s Attorney General’s Office (AG) recently charged 13 former Chiquita executives for financing paramilitary death squads. According to the AG, between 1997 and 2004, executives of the US-based corporation paid $1.7 million to the United Self-Defenders of Colombia, a paramilitary group who are accused of killing 4,335 people, disappearing 1,306 people, and forcibly displacing 1,675 others. The charges are a result of Colombian Prosecutor General Humberto Martinez’s effort to investigate and prosecute corporate funding of paramilitary squads.