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Rule-of-law Tools for Post-conflict States

Truth Commissions

image of Rule-of-law Tools for Post-conflict States
Countries emerging from conflict often suffer weak or non-existent rule of law, inadequate law enforcement and justice administration capacity, and increased instances of human rights violations. This situation is often exacerbated by a lack of public confidence in State authorities and a shortage of resources. These rule-of-law tools will provide practical guidance to field missions and transitional administrations in critical transitional justice and rule of law-related areas. This publication specifically sets out basic principles and approaches to truth commissions and is intended to assist United Nations and other policymakers in advising on the development of truth-seeking mechanisms.

English

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A truth commission's operation

Truth commissions collect much of their primary information through statements taken directly from victims, witnesses and survivors of past violations, generally during a one-on-one private meeting with a staff statement-taker. These statement-takers may be placed in regional offices of the commission in addition to the headquarters or may travel in mobile teams to different villages around the country. Statement-taking should be designed to allow victims to recount their experiences in a supportive and safe environment.

English

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