Agathon Rwasa

Ce site web publie les atrocités des rebelles FNL du Burundi et mène une campagne pour traduire en justice le dirigeant des FNL, Agathon Rwasa. Nous essayons aussi de mettre à nue la question d'impunité en génerale. This website aims to highlight atrocities by the Burundian FNL rebels, and campaigns to see FNL leader Agathon Rwasa brought to justice. We also aim to highlight the issue of impunity worldwide.

Friday, June 17, 2005

"Amnesty" spectre looms as Burundi approves "Truth commission"

Burundi Approves Truth and Reconciliation Commission Plan

The government of Burundi has endorsed a UN plan to set up a truth and reconciliation commission as part of the country’s peace process...

The UN Security Council now needs to pass a resolution backing a TRC in Burundi, as well as a special court to prosecute war crimes or human rights violations.

One of the most successful truth and reconciliation commissions operated in South Africa in the mid-90’s, following the end of apartheid. Richard Lyster is a former TRC commissioner and a human rights attorney in South Africa. From Durban, he spoke to English to Africa reporter Joe De Capua about the difficulties in setting up such a commission...

The human rights attorney says while the TRC knew in advance what the testimony would be of those who told story of human rights abuses, it was important for witnesses and the country to share in a ‘cathartic’ event.

Also, while the natural urge of many people is to seek revenge against those who killed loved ones, the TRC must balance establishing the truth and amnesty for those who publicly testified about their criminal actions.

See also: -“Agreements based on immunity from prosecution rarely work”
- Pictures from the Gatumba massacre, August 13th 2004
Wikipedia entry on Gatumba

Take action - Fax your MP!
Take action - sign the Gatumba petition


Blogger R said...

Burundians have pointed out one key difference between South Africa's peace process and Burundi's. Terrible though Apartheid was, far more serious crimes were committed in Burundi, and on a far greater scale. For many South African torture victims, hearing their former tormentor's public apology was a valuable part of the healing process. But you can't apologise to someone who's dead, nor can you "heal" them. And most of Burundi's victims weren't just tortured - they were brutally killed.

Is the UN going to punish Burundi's mass-murderers, or pardon them? Will the TRC really be a serious attempt to end the cycle of violence, or a cynical smokescreen for yet another amnesty?

If Burundi's history is anything to go by, the killers will be rather more keen on taking up the offer of impunity than on fulfilling the other side of the bargain - accounting for their crimes and ending the violence. And when the likes of Agathon Rwasa, newly washed clean of the crimes of the past, embark on yet another killing spree, will the UN really have what it takes to stop it?

12:56 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home