Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Talking ‘Transition’ in Tunis

A resident of central Tunisia gestures 
during a demonstration in front of the 
Government Palace, January 2011 
(FETHI BELAID/Getty Images)
Tunisia’s recent uprising—resulting in the fall of President Ben Ali’s regime—opened the door to debates on how to address widespread political repression and human rights violations in the country and the region. 

The Arab Institute for Human Rights, the International Center for Transitional Justice, the Tunisian League for Human Rights, and the UN Office of the High Commission for Human Rights are hosting an international conference to discuss these issues this week in Tunis. 

The conference is bringing together more than 150 government and civil society actors from around the world to discuss common challenges faced by societies in transition, with a focus on the Tunisian context. Participants will bring comparative experiences from political transitions in Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Eastern Europe. 

The conference will open on Thursday April 14 with opening remarks from:

The conference will have six sessions in total over two days. We’ll post the final conference schedule soon, but for now, here is an overview of the topics that will be covered:
  • Comparing experiences from post-authoritarian settings
  • Understanding criminal justice and accountability for perpetrators of human rights violations
  • Reforming repressive government institutions into public service instruments
  • Establishing the truth about the past
  • Providing reparations for victims of human rights violations 
  • Addressing Justice priorities for women

Throughout the week we’ll be posting background and conference updates here, so make sure to check back often, or subscribe by rss or email.

We’ll also be tweeting live from the conference sessions on Thursday and Friday. Subscribe to our twitter feed here.

And of course, photos from the conference will be available on flickr. We’ll let you know when they’re up.

This conference was organized with generous support from the Open Society Foundations.

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