"Whereas victims of ordinary crimes such as theft, robbery, assault or murder find it easier to obtain redress, victims of the most serious violatons such as war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity receive less attention insofar as their redress is concerned. Apart from some exceptional cases where victims of serious human rights abuses had their right to redress vindicated, there has not been an effective and comprehensive way of redressing victims of gross human rights violations. In Africa for instance, victims' redress in post-Apartheid South Africa and post-genocide Rwanda have been problematic. Thus, it is meaningful investigating how effectively the victims' right to reparation can be implemented in case of gross and systematic human rights violations. Preliminary to the above interrogation are questions such as: what are gross and systematic human rights violations? What are international standards regarding redress for the victims of such abuses? The case studies of Sierra Leone and the DRC will be closely analysed as an empirical foundation for these questions. ... This study consists of five chapters. Chapter one draws the context in which the study emerges. It provides the foundation and the structure of the dissertation. Chapter two outlines the legal framework that is relevant for answering the questions raised by this study. It explores international human rights standards regarding reparation of vicitms of gross and systematic violations. Chapter three analyses the implementation of victims' reparation in the context of Sierra Leone. It confronts Sierra Leonean responses to war victims with international standards on victims' reparation. Chapter four analyses victims' situation in the post-conflict Democratic Republic of Congo and draws lessons from the Sierra Leonean experience. Chapter five sums up findings of the study." -- Introduction.
Prepared under the supervision of Professor Alejandro Lorite Escorihuela at the Department of Law, American University in Cairo, Egypt
Thesis (LLM (Human Rights and Democratisation in Africa)) -- University of Pretoria, 2006.
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