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  • Print publication year: 2009
  • Online publication date: May 2010

Part II - The Design of Amnesties

Summary

INTRODUCTION

Accepting the regrettable fact that new amnesties will continue to arise and tend to remain in force years and decades later, this part of the book presents an original amnesty design methodology to help limit the damage that amnesties exact on the international rule of law and victims' rights. Many of the amnesties referred to here are not ones that ever would be supported as such by right-thinking persons. However, the reason for including unprincipled amnesties is the same as the reason for including more principled amnesties, namely, to glean useful lessons and inventive options for possible application in the negotiation and design of future amnesties.

The amnesty framework presented here neither is the first attempt nor will it be the last to list the elements or conditions for a legitimate amnesty. Yet the framework is original – it incorporates elements proposed by others while also filling some important gaps. In that respect, it might be an advance on the status quo in terms of its structure and content. In addition, the framework may prove useful in the design of leniency measures other than amnesty. For, even if the frequency of the worst forms of amnesty periodically diminishes, the general need of leniency options never will disappear as long as negotiation remains a feature of conflict resolution.

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