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Human Rights Comment

Reconciliation Stalled in the Western Balkans

21/11/2017 Strasbourg

In March 2012 I travelled to Sarajevo with my predecessor for the launch of an Issue Paper on post-war justice and durable peace in the former Yugoslavia, followed by vivid discussions with political leaders and civil society representatives in Sarajevo, Zagreb, Belgrade and Ljubljana. This...

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Human Rights Comment

Why remembering the Holocaust is a human rights imperative

18/10/2016 Strasbourg

The Shoah stands out as one of the defining moments of history that has shaped the conscience of mankind. It is unique in its roots, implementation and envisioned totality. During my mandate as Commissioner for Human Rights, I have attended a number of ceremonies of commemoration of the victims...

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Human Rights Comment

Human rights defenders’ work is vital for redress to victims of enforced disappearance

29/08/2016 Strasbourg

Last March I published an Issue Paper on Missing persons and victims of enforced disappearance in Europe, aiming to help Council of Europe member states improve their law and practice. Much remains to be done, considering that thousands of cases of missing persons and enforced disappearance...

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Human Rights Comment

Time to cure amnesia about the history of Roma in Europe

30/07/2015 Strasbourg

In a few days, we will commemorate the liquidation 71 years ago of the so-called “Gypsy family camp” at Auschwitz-Birkenau. On 2 August 1944, 2 897 persons were taken to the gas chambers and exterminated. Only a few months earlier, on 16 May 1944, the detainees of the “Gypsy camp” had refused to...

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Human Rights Comment

Armenian-Turkish Reconnections and Human Rights

17/04/2015 Strasbourg

History continues to divide Armenian and Turkish officialdom, but there are many civil society, cultural and academic initiatives aiming to reconnect the two societies. April 24 marks the centennial of the beginning of the mass killings, deportations and dispossession of Armenians in the Ottoman...

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