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Comparative Perspectives on Transitional Justice Processes in Mali and Côte d’Ivoire
April 9, 2015 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Please join ABA ROLI‘s Country Director in Mali, Olivier Kambala wa Kambala, for a discussion on Mali‘s transitional justice process, drawing from his most recent work to integrate community-driven priorities into national reconciliation efforts. Comparative perspectives will be explored with panelist Jim Wormington, West Africa Researcher at Human Rights Watch, as he discusses the state of the transitional justice process in Côte d‘Ivoire. The panel will explore what is needed to help both countries achieve greater social cohesion and lasting peace, and will conclude by considering whether lessons learned from Mali and Côte d‘Ivoire have implications for transitional justice processes in other countries where ABA ROLI is working, such as Burundi, the Central African Republic, and Mauritania.
- Olivier Kambala wa Kambala, Mali Country Director, ABA ROLI
- Jim Wormington, West Africa Researcher, Human Rights Watch
Elizabeth Andersen, Director, ABA ROLI
In recent years, Mali and Côte d‘Ivoire have been dealing with the aftermath of massive violations of human rights that have inflicted considerable suffering on civilian populations and that undermine transitions to participatory and democratic forms of governance. In Mali, official attempts to end the crisis that was sparked by the January 2012 rebellion and aggravated by a coup d‘état and the subsequent seizure of large territories of the country‘s north by a mix of separatist and Islamist groups, have focused on the ongoing negotiation of a peace agreement in Algiers. Transitional justice efforts displayed by the government of Mali to date, including the creation of a truth-seeking institution, national and international prosecutions initiatives, as well as the drafting of a reparations framework are all positive developments, but they must be complemented by additional efforts that can address the root causes of the crisis, including weak institutions, entrenched corruption, and inequality. Conversely, the government of Cote d‘Ivoire has made little progress in addressing root causes of long-standing politico-ethnic conflict that culminated in the 2010-2011 post-election crisis in which security forces, rebel forces, and allied militia groups regularly committed grave crimes against civilians with complete impunity. Despite the establishment of three national justice institutions mandated to address these atrocities, much remains to be done.
The ABA Rule of Law Initiative has operated in Mali since 2011. Since 2013, we have been working with government and civil society partners to implement an effective transitional justice process. Our efforts have focused on creating dialogue – both at the community and national levels – to facilitate the emergence of a strategy of transitional justice that provides a comprehensive and holistic response to the needs of victims and that contributes to ending cycles of human rights violations in the country.