is the sacred scream that now unites the people of Latin America
Impunity. Perhaps no word defines the experiences of Latin America as well as this one. Lack of punishment, of investigation, of justice. The possiblity of committing crimes - from common robberies to rape, torture, murders - without having to face, much less suffer, any punishment. And therefore, the implicit aproval of the morality of these crimes. Forgiving and forgetting without remembering - or remembering too well, but not caring - that what is forgotten will be repeated. As thus what is done without any punishment, can be repeated without fear.
How many died? How many were taken from their homes, from their children, to later find death in a cot under a cattleprod, before a gun, from a flying plane? Dozens, hundreds, of thousands perhaps, if we multiply them by all the countries of Latin America. And the guilty, invariably, are free, enjoying life, often at their old posts where they can do it again. How many die today by their hands?
Impunity without doubt is one of the gravest problems affecting the continent, and one that needs to be urgently addressed. The articles and reports that we include here explore the problem, and perhaps, offer solutions - not perfect ones, of course, but a beginning. You can find more information under each country.
International Criminal Court
International Resolutions on Impunity
- The Realization of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
Final report on the question of the impunity of perpetrators of human rights violations (economic, social and cultural rights), prepared by Mr. El Hadji Guissé, Special Rapporteur, June 1997
- The Administration of Justice and the Human Rights of Detainees.
Question of the impunity of perpetrators of human rights violations (civil and political)
Revised final report prepared by Mr. Joinet , Oct. 1997
Reports on Impunity
- Impunity in Latin American: The Argentine Case
ESP/SP - Report of Argentine NGO's to the European Parlament, October 1996.
Articles on Impunity
- Impunity Newsletter
of the International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development - ENG/ING
- Condicionality, Human Rights and Democracy from the Latin American Experience ESP/SP - Adolfo Perez Esquivel, premio Nobel de la Paz, SERPAJ
- The Trial for the Italian Disappeared, Origent and Current Situation ESP/SP - Jorge Ithurburu, Liga por el Derecho y la Liberación de los Pueblos
- The destiny of Impunity in Chile and Bolivia. What fears and what hopes?
ESP/SP - Yves MIGNOT Responsable del Departamento Acciones Internacionales de ACAT-Francia
- The United Nations In Front of Impunity ESP/SP - D. Juan Zurita Salvador, Director of the Human Rights Office of the Foreing Relations Ministry, Spain
- Truth Commissions in Latin America
ESP/SP by Esteban Cuya
- Truth Commissions: A Comparative Assessment
An Interdisciplinary Discussion Held at Harvard Law School in May 1996
International Conferences and Events
International Seminar on Impunity and its effects on Democratic Processes
Santiago de Chile, 13 - 14 and 15 de December1996
- The Problem of Impunity: The need of an international answer
ESP/SP - Public Hearing of the European Parliament. October 30 and 31, 1996.
Declarations Against Impunity
- Declaration Against Impunity
FRA/FRA by the International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development. June 1996