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2004 | Heidy Rombouts; Victim Organizations and the Politics of Reparations: A case study on Rwanda

by H.Rombouts; Intersentia 2004
ISBN 90-5095-431-6

Reparation for victims of gross and systematic human rights violations in a contemporary issue gaining increased attention in both national and international politics.  Post-conflict societies have to face the legacies of the dark past and dealing with a large group of victims is one of them.  Transitional justice mechanisms trying to cope with the past should not overlook the issue of reparation.  This research demonstrates how reparation for victims of gross and systematic human rights violations differs from reparation for isolated violations.  The Rwandan case study unveils the role of victim organizations in and the competitions and politicization of the reparation debate.  Although reparation for victims is a crucial element in transitional justice, it becomes clear that the way in which the reparation debate unfolds does not necessarily contribute to the peaceful future of a post-conflict society.  This study argues that remedying the process and debate of the search for reparation will lead to an improved and more construction reparation policy.