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Recommendations to the 15th Session of the Assembly of States Parties

With the International Criminal Court (ICC) conducting its first reparations proceedings in four separate cases, the Victims' Rights Working Group's participation in the 15th session of the Assembly of States Parties (ASP) focused on how to best give full effect to the rights of victims as enshrined in the Rome Statute, in particular, their right to participation, representation and reparation. This paper by the Victims' Rights Working Group (VRWG), a network of national and international experts that advocates for victims' rights before the ICC, informally facilitated by REDRESS, provides recommendations to States Parties on how to improve the ability of victims to fully exercise their rights.

Faire Avancer la Réparation à la CPI : Recommandations

Ce rapport étudie la pratique suivie par la CPI jusqu’à présent et analyse les principaux défis relatifs à la construction d’un système de réparation qui respecte les droits des victimes tout en tenant compte des ressources limitées et autres contraintes rencontrées par la Cour. Nous encourageons celle-ci à se demander comment rendre les procédures plus efficaces et prévisibles et formulons des recommandations à cet effet. Nous adressons nos remerciements au Open Society Foundations human rights program pour avoir supporté les recherches nécessaires à ce rapport.

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Litigating Torture and Ill-treatment in East Africa: A Manual for Practitioners

This manual seeks to assist those working to fight torture and to support victims through litigation in six countries in East Africa: Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Uganda and Tanzania. This region boasts a vibrant and active civil society that has advocated for the introduction of specific anti-torture legislation to create opportunities for litigation at domestic, regional, and international levels. Meanwhile, national lawyers have continued to use existing avenues to litigate against torture to secure accountability and justice for victims. This manual seeks to build on those efforts to offer a practical guide to the continuing development of a range of avenues for victims of torture and ill-treatment to obtain redress. 

Moving Reparation Forward at the ICC: Recommendations

These recommendations, published with the research support of the Open Society Foundations human rights program, reflect the key challenges that the International Criminal Court faces in designing an efficient and predictable reparation system that respects victims’ rights, including the lack of overarching guidelines applying consistently across the different Trial and Appeal Chambers, the limited resources available for the identification of beneficiaries, and the lack of existing jurisprudence to suggest which operations of a Victim Trust Fund may be best delegated by the Court to other administrative bodies.

Litigating Torture and Ill-Treatment in the Middle East & North Africa: A Manual for Practitioners

This manual focuses on four case studies in the Middle East and North Africa region - Bahrain, Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia - to analyse how torture and ill-treatment can and have been litigated, and how barriers to justice have been dealt with locally and internationally. The manual also draws out some additional relevant practice and jurisprudence relating to other countries in the region. While national systems differ, valuable lessons can be learnt from the experiences of lawyers and practitioners in those countries which may serve as useful guidance for practitioners from other countries in the region.

Comments on the Draft Addendum to General Recommendation No. 19: Accelerating Elimination of Gender-based violence against Women

REDRESS has submitted comments to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) on its Draft Addendum to General Recommendation No. 19.  Adopted in 1992, General Recommendation 19 identifies all acts of gender-based violence as forms of discrimination, targets its root causes within the inequality framework, and obliges states to take all appropriate measures to end violence against women. REDRESS makes several recommendation to strengthen the Draft Addendum, including the addition of a separate section on victims’ right to redress, in order to emphasise and clarify the nature and content of the corresponding obligation on States to ensure provisions for redress. 

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Mass Refugee Influxes, Refoulement and the Prohibition Against Torture

This report calls for the review of hostile migration law and policy implemented by destination States around the world in response to the global influx of refugees and other migrants. This report finds that these policies are premised on deterrence, rather than humanitarianism or international legal principles, and often put those seeking entry at risk of torture and ill-treatment. In identifying particularly pressing areas for reform, including the implementation of spurious and punitive immigration detention regimes, this report underscores the need to respect the physical and mental integrity of asylum seekers while their claims are being processed.

NGO letter to the UN Human Rights Council on Sudan

Five years on, the conflicts between Sudan and armed opposition on South Kordofan and Blue Nile continues to have a devastating impact on civilians, with Sudanese forces continuing to attack villages, bomb civilian areas indiscriminately, and block humanitarian aid from accessing affected areas. REDRESS, alongside 32 NGOs and experts, has called on the UN Human Rights Council to support the adoption of a strong resolution on Sudan at its 33rd session in September, including the instatement of a Special Rapporteur to monitor and report on ongoing human rights violations in this conflict. REDRESS also urges Sudan to implement the recommendations made to it by the UN Human Rights Council in 2016.

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