HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Places » International » Latin America (Group) » Amnesty law nullified in ...

Wed Aug 31, 2016, 02:09 AM

Amnesty law nullified in El Salvador: knowing the truth and taking the victims into account

Amnesty law nullified in El Salvador: knowing the truth and taking the victims into account
Josť Zepeda 17 August 2016

. . .

Four of the five judges of the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice of El Salvador are declaring the 1993 law unconstitutional due to it being "contrary to the right of access to justice, judicial protection or protection of fundamental rights". They also argue that the amnesty law violates the "right of victims to full compensation for crimes against humanity and war crimes constituting serious violations of international humanitarian law".

The Chamber is nullifying the law because it violates two articles of the Salvadoran Constitution which are linked to the American Convention on Human Rights and the Protocol II of 1977 additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 related to the protection of victims of non-international armed conflicts. To Belarmino Jaime's mind, the judge who voted in the minority, amnesty was the price paid to end the armed conflict. The verdict of his colleagues, he says, reopens 32 cases, included in the report of the Truth Commission, for prosecution, which conflicts with principles of legality, non-retroactivity of laws, legal certainty and the prohibition of double jeopardy. Jaime considers that the four judges are exceeding the limits of competence granted to the Chamber by the Constitution.What is clear is that the ruling of the Constitutional Chamber broke the dam of silence. Controversy is now coming thick and fast.

. . .

Five days after the Commission presented its report, the Legislative Assembly passed the General Amnesty Law for the Consolidation of Peace, which granted absolute, total and unconditional pardon to those who have committed political offences and repealed all provisions that run counter to the law, in clear reference to the Truth Commission, which constitutes a violation of the peace agreements. Critics of the declaration of the unconstitutionality of the amnesty law, which are both in the ranks of the FMLN government and the opposition, mainly in the ARENA party, raise the banner of fear, forecasting risks of destabilization and social conflicts. The most radical opponents accuse the Chamber of judicial dictatorship or irresponsibility towards the country's future.

With crimes against humanity that bypass the legal and social, the situation is similar to what happens with tectonic faults. Apart from the San Andreas, the other tectonic plates, such as the South American, the Nazca, the Cocos, the Caribbean, and the North American, are not visible to the naked eye, but they are there. Sooner or later, they cause earthquakes of great intensity. Similarly to those shifts, the silence that attempts to keep great human tragedies in obscurity causes crises at some point, and this is when the corpses emerge forcefully to the surface. This has happened again and again in history. This is the lesson being vocalised by the Salvadoran bishops, who celebrate the repeal, to ask their compatriots to confront this time maturely and calmly

More:
https://www.opendemocracy.net/democraciaabierta/jos-zepeda/amnesty-law-nullifyed-in-el-salvador-knowing-truth-and-taking-victims-i

0 replies, 425 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Reply to this thread