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Argentina’s Human Rights Trials


Edited By Gabriele Andreozzi

The current situation in Argentina is unprecedented. In compliance with prescribed timings and procedures, the crimes committed by the state in recent history are being prosecuted and penalized. This book traces the path of the trials for crimes against humanity in Argentina, from the Trial of the Juntas that began during the presidency of Raúl Alfonsín to current developments under Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, analysing the ideas of memory, truth and justice. In the volume, judges, lawyers, historians, journalists and witnesses from the era of terror give a lucid and critical reconstruction of the last thirty years. The contributors also point to other states where crimes against humanity are still being committed on a daily basis, despite being notionally proscribed.
This book is translated from Spanish, originally appearing under the title Juicios por crímenes de lesa humanidad en Argentina (2011).
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The Process of Justice for the State Crimes Committed in Argentina During the Last Civil-Military Dictatorship. The View of a Lawyer Representing Victims and a Militant in HIJOS


← 214 | 215 → ANA OBERLIN

The appearance of HIJOS as part of the human rights movement in Argentina: The context of impunity

Formed in the year 1995, HIJOS (Hijos e hijas por la Identidad y la Justicia contra el Olvido y el Silencio: Sons and Daughters for Identity and Justice against Forgetting and Silence) is a political organization that struggles for human rights. When this collective emerged, there already existed the Madres and the Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (the Mothers and the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo) and various other human rights organizations in Argentina, which had been born before or during the regime. These organizations fought to put an end to the impunity of those responsible for the mass violations of human rights committed during the last civil–military dictatorship (1976–1983). This impunity had been established by different actions and omissions of the democratic governments which came after the pro-coup elements.

Before the year in which HIJOS appeared, a series of events occurred that had a marked impact on the struggle of the human rights movement in our country. In what follows I will briefly describe the principal landmarks, so as to permit understanding of the context in which this organization arose.

← 215 | 216 → In the closing stages of the dictatorship, on 23 March 1983, the regime dictated the so-called ley de autoamnistía (“law of self-amnesty”). The objective of this regulation (No. 22,924) was the de-responsibilization of...

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