UN Special Rapporteur on Truth, Justice and Reparation: All States should apply international standards for transitional justice

The ICJ welcomes the last report of Mr. Fabian Salvioli as he ends his 6-year tenure as the UN Special Rapporteur on truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence. The report, presented to the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) on 14 September 2023, compiles and analyses existing international standards under the five pillars of transitional justice: truth, justice, reparation, memorialization and guarantees of non-recurrence.

The ICJ participated in the dialogue on this report at the HRC to share concrete country situations illustrating how important the application of these international standards is, including in Nepal, Libya, Guatemala and Colombia.

The ICJ congratulates Mr. Salvioli for his work in the 6 years of his mandate. Read our full statement below:

Oral statement of the International Commission of Jurists during the Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on Truth, Justice, Reparation and Guarantees of non-recurrence

“Mr. Special Rapporteur,

The ICJ welcomes your report that provides an important overview of the existing international legal standards underpinning the different pillars of transitional justice. This normative framework should be applied by all States in transition, including in Nepal, Libya and Guatemala:

Regarding Nepal, the ICJ welcomes the joint communication you sent to the government, identifying problems with the proposed Bill amending the Act on the Commission on Investigation of Disappeared Persons, Truth and Reconciliation, submitted to Parliament on 19 March 2023. The delay in amending the law in accordance with international standards has an adverse impact on victims’ access to justice. The government has prevented access to the ordinary justice system under the pretext that future transitional mechanisms will deliver justice. We recommend that you remain engaged on this situation.

Concerning Libya, the ICJ urges the authorities to adopt a law on transitional justice that fully guarantees the independence, impartiality and competence of the bodies entrusted to bring truth, redress and justice to victims of gross human rights violations. Further delay in doing so puts the onus on this Council to establish an independent accountability mechanism.

The ICJ condemns the harassment and spurious criminal investigations against current and former judges and lawyers in Guatemala that tried or represented victims in cases of gross human rights violations that occurred during the internal armed conflict. And regarding Colombia, the rampant killings of human rights defenders and the illicit recruitment of children by armed groups and other serious crime serve to undermine transitional justice efforts following the comprehensive peace agreement.

Thank you.”

For more information, contact:

Sandra Epal Ratjen, ICJ UN Representative and Senior Legal Adviser, e: sandra.epal@icj.org