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Part II The Right to Know, B Commissions of Inquiry, Principle 13 Publicizing the Commission’s Reports

Catherine Harwood, Carsten Stahn

From: The United Nations Principles to Combat Impunity: A Commentary

Edited By: Frank Haldemann, Thomas Unger

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 16 July 2024

Right to truth — Immunity from jurisdiction — Witnesses — Truth and Reconciliation Commissions

Principle 13 deals with the publication of the commission’s reports. The principle of publicity is a key component of the United Nations’ Updated Impunity Principles. Through full publication and wide dissemination of a report, the right to the truth is realized. An authoritative account of violations might also promote accountability and reconciliation. A final report should be widely accessible, taking into consideration cultural and technological contexts. However, commissions may receive information confidentially and exclude some information from reports for security reasons and to avoid interference with witnesses and commissioners. This chapter first provides a contextual and historical background on Principle 13 before discussing its theoretical framework and how commissions have adopted confidentiality measures to protect witnesses and victims.

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