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Prosecuting Serious Human Rights Violations$
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Anja Seibert-Fohr

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199569328

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199569328.001.0001

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Prosecution under the American Convention on Human Rights

Prosecution under the American Convention on Human Rights

(p.51) 3 Prosecution under the American Convention on Human Rights
Prosecuting Serious Human Rights Violations

Anja Seibert-Fohr

Oxford University Press

The Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights have been at the forefront of the fight against impunity for years. This chapter analyses the role of prosecution and punishment under the American Convention on Human Rights. It explains how these institutions have developed their doctrine on whether and why there is a treaty obligation to prosecute serious human violations. Amnesties and large scale impunity have been at the centre of the Court's jurisprudence on criminal matters. A detailed representation of the relevant provisions and the pertinent jurisprudence are provided in order to provide a guide through the wealth of cases. The chapter elaborates on the necessary standards for the criminalization, investigation, prosecution, and punishment of serious human rights abuses. Special attention is devoted to the role of victims and the right to justice debate in Latin America. The chapter concludes with a summary and outlook.

Keywords:   treaty obligation, criminalization, amnesties, right to justice, victims, human rights abuses

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