By Louise Mallinder

Amnesty legislation are political instruments used seeing that precedent days by way of states wishing to quell dissent, introduce reforms, or in attaining peaceable relationships with their enemies. in recent times, they've got turn into contentious because of a conception that they violate foreign legislations, really the rights of sufferers, and give a contribution to extra violence. This view is disputed by way of political negotiators who frequently argue that amnesty is an important cost to pay that allows you to in achieving a good, peaceable, and equitable method of presidency. This ebook investigates no matter if an amnesty unavoidably involves a contravention of a state's foreign tasks, or no matter if an amnesty, followed through replacement justice mechanisms, can actually give a contribution absolutely to either peace and justice. This research originated by way of developing an intensive Amnesty legislations Database that includes details on 506 amnesty strategies in a hundred thirty nations brought because the moment international struggle. The database and bankruptcy constitution have been designed to correspond with the foremost elements of an amnesty - why it was once brought, who benefited from its defense, which crimes it lined, and no matter if it was once conditional. In assessing conditional amnesties, comparable transitional justice tactics akin to selective prosecutions, fact commissions, community-based justice mechanisms, lustration, and reparations courses have been thought of. as a result, the jurisprudence on the subject of amnesty from nationwide courts, overseas tribunals, and courts in 3rd states was once addressed. total, amnesties have elevated in recognition because the Nineteen Nineties. for that reason, instead of attempting to dissuade states from utilizing this software of transitional justice, this publication argues that foreign actors may still as a substitute paintings to restrict the extra unfavourable varieties of amnesty through encouraging states to lead them to conditional and to introduce complementary courses to fix the damage and forestall a repetition of the crimes.

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Extra info for Amnesty, Human Rights and Political Transitions: Bridging the Peace and Justice Divide (Studies in International Law)

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I’m totally opposed to it. ’ See Sam McBride, ‘Victims’ Anger at “Amnesty for Terrorists” ’ News Letter (Belfast 9 January 2008). (B) Mallinder Intro 20/8/08 13:16 Page 2 2 Introduction Faustian pacts with the ‘devil’ in the form of torturers and murderers, where rights such as truth and justice are sacrificed for political stability. This concept of a Faustian pact is reflected in much of the transitional justice literature, which focuses on the supposedly contradictory goals of peace and justice faced by transitional regimes responding to periods of mass violence.

13 Robert Parker, ‘Fighting the Siren’s Song: The Problem of Amnesty in Historical and Contemporary Perspective’ (2001) 42 Acta Juridica Hungaria 69, 76. 14 For a discussion of the history of amnesties from their ancient origins, see Andreas O’Shea, Amnesty for Crime in International Law and Practice (Kluwer Law International, Hague 2002) 5–21. 15 Norman Weisman, ‘A History and Discussion of Amnesty’ (1972) 4 Columbia Human Rights Law Review 520, 530. 16 Parker (n 13) 76. 17 ECOSOC, ‘Study on Amnesty Laws and their role in the safeguard and protection of human rights’ (21 June 1985) UN Doc.

In addition to truth commissions, amnesties can be linked to other truth recovery processes such as civil proceedings or commissions of inquiry. For example, testimony given to the Bloody Sunday Inquiry in Northern Ireland cannot be used in criminal proceedings. 27 Related to ‘blanket amnesties’ are ‘self amnesties’, which describes laws or decrees which are passed unilaterally by a government to shield its agents from prosecution. As will be argued in chapter 1, selfamnesties are distinct from amnesties emanating from peace negotiations involving representatives from different stakeholder groups.

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Amnesty, Human Rights and Political Transitions: Bridging by Louise Mallinder
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