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State of play of existing instruments for combating impunity for international crimes

14-08-2020

The European Union and its Member States have been at the forefront of the fight against impunity for core international crimes, collectively providing political, technical and financial assistance to international, regional and domestic accountability efforts. Focusing on the current EU framework on accountability and six country situations (Rwanda, Colombia, Venezuela, Myanmar, Syria and Iraq), this study offers recommendations to guide future EU policy and the engagement of the European Parliament ...

The European Union and its Member States have been at the forefront of the fight against impunity for core international crimes, collectively providing political, technical and financial assistance to international, regional and domestic accountability efforts. Focusing on the current EU framework on accountability and six country situations (Rwanda, Colombia, Venezuela, Myanmar, Syria and Iraq), this study offers recommendations to guide future EU policy and the engagement of the European Parliament in the fight against impunity. The recommendations include enhancing the capacity, efficiency and coordination of EU institutions working on accountability, as well as encouraging comprehensive, impartial and inclusive approaches to country situations. EU action in bilateral and multilateral fora is also covered, with a view to enhancing the universal reach of accountability mechanisms and the protection of their integrity, encouraging cooperation and assistance, and to upholding the principle of complementarity.

Parlamendiväline autor

Olympia BEKOU

Universal jurisdiction and international crimes: Constraints and best practices

17-09-2018

This report summarises the proceedings of a workshop organised by the European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Human Rights (DROI), in association with the Committee on Legal Affairs (JURI) and the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE). Academics and practitioners discussed international trends as regards the concept of universal jurisdiction and the EU’s approach to promoting universal jurisdiction through its external relations, as well as practical experience in applying universal ...

This report summarises the proceedings of a workshop organised by the European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Human Rights (DROI), in association with the Committee on Legal Affairs (JURI) and the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE). Academics and practitioners discussed international trends as regards the concept of universal jurisdiction and the EU’s approach to promoting universal jurisdiction through its external relations, as well as practical experience in applying universal jurisdiction in the fight against impunity in Europe. The experts agreed that universal jurisdiction can play a role as part of a wider accountability strategy, complementary to international courts and prosecutions on other jurisdictional bases. They recommended more specialised training for investigators, prosecutors, judges and law enforcement staff for universal jurisdiction cases and more cooperation at EU and international level. Speakers supported the initiative for a multilateral treaty on mutual legal assistance and extradition. Special attention in universal jurisdiction cases must be given to victims seeking justice, including for sexual and gender-based crimes.

Parlamendiväline autor

Julia KREBS, Cedric RYNGAERT, Florian JEßBERGER

Sexual Violence against Minors in Latin America

12-10-2016

Sexual violence against minors is a major problem in Latin America. Children are mostly at risk in their own homes, while adolescents are at risk in their homes but also in the wider community (for instance, schools or boyfriends). However, data is very limited due to silence around the issue. Latin America is highly patriarchal, is riven by inequalities within and between social groups, and has weak judicial institutions; these are all factors that impact on gender based violence. However, governments ...

Sexual violence against minors is a major problem in Latin America. Children are mostly at risk in their own homes, while adolescents are at risk in their homes but also in the wider community (for instance, schools or boyfriends). However, data is very limited due to silence around the issue. Latin America is highly patriarchal, is riven by inequalities within and between social groups, and has weak judicial institutions; these are all factors that impact on gender based violence. However, governments in Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, and Paraguay are starting to see children as individuals with rights, rather than minors under the sole authority of fathers, and are designing laws and agencies to protect those rights. Civil society in the meantime is increasingly mobilising against violence against women, including violence against girls, two forms of violence that go hand in hand, at a time when the problem is increasingly recognised and acted upon globally. This report outlines possibilities for the EU to support these recent developments and initiatives to end violence against minors via the establishment of national action plans, in collaboration with national, regional and global partners.

Parlamendiväline autor

Jelke BOESTEN (International Development Institute, King’s College, London, the UK)

Human Rights in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC): Turmoil in the run-up to elections

06-06-2016

DRC is experiencing a plethora of human rights problems. In the east of the country, the national army and the UN peacekeeping mission are not able to deal effectively with the violence still perpetrated by some armed groups – a legacy of the bloody civil war that ravaged the country. The human rights situation has also deteriorated in the run-up to the general elections, which are expected to be postponed; demands from the political opposition, civil society and mass media for timely elections have ...

DRC is experiencing a plethora of human rights problems. In the east of the country, the national army and the UN peacekeeping mission are not able to deal effectively with the violence still perpetrated by some armed groups – a legacy of the bloody civil war that ravaged the country. The human rights situation has also deteriorated in the run-up to the general elections, which are expected to be postponed; demands from the political opposition, civil society and mass media for timely elections have been met with heavy repression from the government.

Mexico: Human rights situation

02-07-2015

Mexico's criminal cartels – the most powerful in the Western hemisphere – have been the source of numerous human rights violations. Major reforms of the legislative and policy framework have been undertaken to improve respect for human rights, but further efforts are necessary to strengthen their implementation.

Mexico's criminal cartels – the most powerful in the Western hemisphere – have been the source of numerous human rights violations. Major reforms of the legislative and policy framework have been undertaken to improve respect for human rights, but further efforts are necessary to strengthen their implementation.

India: human rights

06-03-2015

Although India is the world's largest democracy, its second most populous country and one of its top ten economies, this has not prevented multiple human rights abuses from remaining a fact of life in many parts of the country. In recent statements and resolutions, the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament have voiced deep concern over India's human rights situation.

Although India is the world's largest democracy, its second most populous country and one of its top ten economies, this has not prevented multiple human rights abuses from remaining a fact of life in many parts of the country. In recent statements and resolutions, the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament have voiced deep concern over India's human rights situation.

Sakharov Prize 2014: Tending the scars of sexual violence in DRC

20-11-2014

Dr Denis Mukwege, a 59-year-old gynaecologist from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has won the 2014 Sakharov Prize. The attribution of Europe's top human rights prize is recognition for Dr Mukwege's perseverance and courage in his efforts to help rape survivors over the past 16 years. A fervent advocate of women's rights, he has received many international awards, but has also became the target of death threats, and even an assassination attempt in 2012.

Dr Denis Mukwege, a 59-year-old gynaecologist from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has won the 2014 Sakharov Prize. The attribution of Europe's top human rights prize is recognition for Dr Mukwege's perseverance and courage in his efforts to help rape survivors over the past 16 years. A fervent advocate of women's rights, he has received many international awards, but has also became the target of death threats, and even an assassination attempt in 2012.

Sexual violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo

19-11-2014

For more than two decades, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), and in particular its eastern regions, has faced a chronic and complex humanitarian crisis. Fuelled by ethnic resentment, impunity due to state fragility, and the profits from robbery and illegal exploitation of natural resources, armed groups proliferate, committing human-rights abuses of extreme severity. The award of the Sakharov Prize to Dr Denis Mukwege, a Congolese gynaecologist and women's rights activist, has again drawn international ...

For more than two decades, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), and in particular its eastern regions, has faced a chronic and complex humanitarian crisis. Fuelled by ethnic resentment, impunity due to state fragility, and the profits from robbery and illegal exploitation of natural resources, armed groups proliferate, committing human-rights abuses of extreme severity. The award of the Sakharov Prize to Dr Denis Mukwege, a Congolese gynaecologist and women's rights activist, has again drawn international attention to the desperate plight of women who, according to Dr Mukwege, have become a 'battlefield' in this chronic and thus sometimes forgotten crisis.

Global Efforts to End Sexual Violence in Conflict

25-06-2014

The Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict was co-chaired by the UK and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. An International Protocol on the Documentation and Investigation of Sexual Violence was a key result of the summit. The summit also highlighted the importance of: - providing support for victims of sexual violence ; - strengthening the capacity of national and international security and justice personnel ; - closer international cooperation. Building on the summit ...

The Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict was co-chaired by the UK and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. An International Protocol on the Documentation and Investigation of Sexual Violence was a key result of the summit. The summit also highlighted the importance of: - providing support for victims of sexual violence ; - strengthening the capacity of national and international security and justice personnel ; - closer international cooperation. Building on the summit’s momentum, the European Parliament could : - urge all the Member States to apply the International Protocol ; - advocate mainstreaming this objective into EU CFSP actions ; - suggest increasing assistance for programmes fighting sexual and gender-based violence ; - promote this objective in its own positions and actions.

Corruption in Russia

12-03-2014

Corruption in Russia is deeply entrenched and permeates all levels of Russian society. It causes significant financial loss to the Russian economy in terms of gross domestic product and considerably lowers the country's attractiveness as a foreign direct investment destination. Despite a recent positive trend Russia continues to lag far behind its G8 and G20 peers in the rankings.

Corruption in Russia is deeply entrenched and permeates all levels of Russian society. It causes significant financial loss to the Russian economy in terms of gross domestic product and considerably lowers the country's attractiveness as a foreign direct investment destination. Despite a recent positive trend Russia continues to lag far behind its G8 and G20 peers in the rankings.

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