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3222 - ¿Doing good by stealth¿: human rights and justice policy in the long Chilean transition

Chile ’s accountability practice after the Pinochet regime of 1973 to 1990 was severely hamstrung by its constrained transition and ingrained habits of political caution and judicial corporativism. Not until 1998 did a ‘secondary transition’ see the reirruption of the justice question and the reopening of trials for past human rights crimes. Chile is now perhaps the country with the most complete national level judicial response to past atrocity, despite the perpetuation of amnesty and a continuing notable lack of political will for further truth, justice and memorialisation. How and why did the human rights question re-emerge regardless of official ambivalence, and what has been its impact on public opinion and on judicial receptivity to international law and to broader rights agendas? This paper is based on the work of an innovative research project that is mapping regional trials initiatives and providing a bridge for civil society groups to get closer to the judicial processes which they themselves have set in train. The paper will show how the past justice question in Chile has produced only limited judicial innovation but has opened up important issues about access to information and state-society relationships in a democratic context still deformed by authoritarian legacies.

Palavras-chaves: Chile, human rights, trials, Pinochet, accountability

Autores: collins, cath (Universidad Diego Portales, Chile / Chile)

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