world council of churches

Beyond Impunity
An Ecumenical Approach to Truth, Justice and Reconciliation
by Geneviève Jacques

Violations of human rights and human dignity so massive as to warrant the name crimes against humanity - systematic torture, "disappearnces", ethnic cleansing, even genocide - coontinue to unfold before the eyes of the world.ypY Why is this so, despite the universal revulsion they evoke and their explicit outlawing by international law?

A growing number of observers say a major reason such atrocities persist is impunity: the fact that perpetrators of similar violations in the past have so often escaped accountability for their deeds.

In response to those who claim that the past shouldbe left behind once a conflict is over, the victims of such acts are insisting more and more that there can be no justice and no healing of socity unless the truth is told, unless the criminals are held accountable or those responsible confess their guilt, ask for forgiveness and give concrete signs of repentance.

Reflecting on the experience of people in many parts of the world, this book challenges churches to reach across traditional boundaries and join others in the search for new paths towards genuine justice, repentance and reconciliation and thus to provide hope.

Geneviève Jacques, former member of the International Affairs, Peace & Human Security team, is director of programme of the World Council of Churches.

61 pp.
SFr9.90; US$6.50; 3.95

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