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

References

  1. ^ http://www.ivd.tn/fr/?page_id=428 accessed 22/12/2016
  2. ^ http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/presscenter/articles/2014/06/09/tunisia-launches-truth-and-dignity-commission.html accessed 22/12/2016
  3. ^ http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/presscenter/articles/2014/06/09/tunisia-launches-truth-and-dignity-commission.html accessed 22/12/2016
  4. ^ http://www.justiceinfo.net/en/commission/26232-%E2%80%9Cjust-let-us-work-in-peace,%E2%80%9D-says-tunisia-truth-commission-head.html accessed 22/12/2016
  5. ^ http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/africa/sihem-ben-sedrine-the-tenuous-position-of-the-woman-tasked-with-bringing-those-who-profited-under-10493750.html accessed 22/12/2016
  6. ^ http://www.justiceinfo.net/en/commission/26232-%E2%80%9Cjust-let-us-work-in-peace,%E2%80%9D-says-tunisia-truth-commission-head.html accessed 22/12/2016
  7. ^ https://www.ictj.org/news/tunisia-truth-dignity-public-hearings-live accessed 22/12/2016
  8. ^ http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-38018272 accessed22/12/2016
  9. ^ http://www.ivd.tn/fr/?page_id=438# accessed 22/12/2016
  10. ^ http://www.justiceinfo.net/en/commission/26232-%E2%80%9Cjust-let-us-work-in-peace,%E2%80%9D-says-tunisia-truth-commission-head.html accessed 22/12/2016
  11. ^ http://www.huffpostmaghreb.com/hisham-ben-khamsa/verite-et-dignite--entre-noble-cause-et-instrumentalisation_b_13223028.html accessed 22/12/2016
  12. ^ http://nawaat.org/portail/2016/11/20/la-conjuration-des-imbeciles/ accessed 22/12/2016
  13. ^ http://www.huffpostmaghreb.com/2016/12/07/sihem-ben-sedrine-arp_n_13488248.html accessed 22/12/2016
  14. ^ http://www.huffpostmaghreb.com/2016/12/08/ben-sedrine-arp_n_13507854.html accessed 22/12/2016
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