The Phenomenon of Enforced Disappearances in Transition to Peace

Tuesday 21 May 2024

Martínez, Elisenda Calvet . “The Phenomenon of Enforced Disappearances in Transitions to Peace.” Peace in Progress Magazine. International Catalan Institute for Peace, May 2020.

Elisenda Calvet Martínez’s article explores the issue of enforced disappearances and how it should be addressed in transitional contexts. Martínez examines the global prevalence of enforced disappearances, from those resulting from ethnic cleansing and war crimes, to those caused by forced migrations. She emphasises how enforced disappearances constitute a continuous violation of fundamental human rights, perpetuating suffering and uncertainty, and emphasises the critical role of states in dealing with disappearances through a comprehensive approach that includes truth, justice, reparation, and guarantees of non-repetition. She provides compelling examples of how peace agreements, such as the 1996 Dayton Agreement and the 2006 Peace Agreements in Nepal, have included mechanisms to address the issue of missing persons. Martínez advocates for state accountability in addressing enforced disappearances, emphasising the need for thorough investigations and prosecutions, but also argues that institutional frameworks alone are insufficient without the state’s genuine willingness to address underlying grievances and provide reparations. This online article emphasises the importance of a comprehensive approach that combines legal mechanisms with genuine efforts to recognise the suffering of victims and their families, thus promoting sustainable peace and protecting human rights for future generations.

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