Truth and Dignity Commission (Tunisia)

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Sihem Bensedrine, President of the Commission, speaking in 2012

The Truth and Dignity Commission (Arabic: هيئة الحقيقة والكرامة‎‎) (Hai'at ul-Ḥaqiqa wul-Karāma) (French: Instance Vérité et Dignité) is an independent tribunal established by law in Tunisia on 23 December 2013[1] and formally launched on 9 June 2014 by then-President Moncef Marzouki.[2] Established following the Tunisian Revolution, its purpose is to use both judicial and non-judicial mechanisms to investigate gross human rights violations committed by the Tunisian State since 1955, and to provide compensation and rehabilitation to victims.[3] The Commission was given a four-year mandate (i.e. to 2018) with the possibility of a one-year extension.[4] Its president is the human rights activist Sihem Bensedrine.[5]

The Commission began gathering testimonies from victims of abuse under the old regime in September 2015, and continued to accept new cases until a cut-off date for registrations in June 2016,[6] by which time it had received over 62,000 submissions and heard testimony from about 11,000 people.[7] The Commission held its first public hearing in Tunis on 17 November 2016.[8]

The Commission's members, as of late 2016, are Sihem Bensedrine (president), Ibtihel Abdellatif, Oula Ben Nejma, Mohammed Ben Salem, Ali Gherab, Khaled Krichi, Adel Maïzi, Hayet Ouertani and Slaheddine Rached.[9]

The Commission has faced criticism on a number of grounds, including the slowness of its operations,[10] the basis of its approach,[11] and the fitness of its president,[12] among others. As a result of ongoing concerns, there was a delay in the parliamentary vote to approve the Commissions's budget for 2017[13] although it was eventually agreed by 121 votes to 28 with 21 abstentions.[14]

External links

  • Tunisian Organic Law on Establishing and Organizing Transitional Justice
  • website (in Arabic and French) of the Truth and Dignity Commission


  1. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
  2. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
  3. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
  4. ^,%E2%80%9D-says-tunisia-truth-commission-head.html accessed 22/12/2016
  5. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
  6. ^,%E2%80%9D-says-tunisia-truth-commission-head.html accessed 22/12/2016
  7. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
  8. ^ accessed22/12/2016
  9. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
  10. ^,%E2%80%9D-says-tunisia-truth-commission-head.html accessed 22/12/2016
  11. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
  12. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
  13. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
  14. ^ accessed 22/12/2016
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