Human Righs in Argentina: Building a Bridge Between the Future and the Past
Almost 30 years after restoring democracy, Argentina is at present strengthening different aspects of human rights in a way that is being followed and observed with attention by the international community.
With newly groundbreaking laws (approved with a wide support in Parliament) such as Gender Identity, Decent Death, Equal Marriage or Mental Health, which represent contributions to international human rights law, in a world which is still debating many of these issues without yet reaching a consensus.
The foundation pillar for the construction of such a progressive agenda for the future of human rights in Argentina is the eradication of impunity in relation to the crimes against humanity perpetrated during State terrorism in the 70`s and 80`s.
This process started recently through an internationally unprecedented step, acclaimed by the international community and the human rights movement. Over two decades after the recovery of democracy, trials were re-opened all over the country in 2005.
At present there are 843 prosecutions, and so far 267 persons have been convicted for crimes and crimes against humanity in different levels of participation.
Recently, at the Argentinian Embassy in Washington, there was a seminar to reflect and exchange views with public officials and NGOs on the causes and impact of this dramatic change in Argentina —after long years of tolerating impunity—, and how this domestic advances influence foreign policy and the work with partner countries like the U.S. in promoting human rights around the world and preventing mass atrocities.
The participants, including Estela de Carlotto from Abuelas de la Plaza de Mayo, addressed the new agenda of human rights in Argentina and its link to the way a past with massive and systematic violations of human rights was finally resolved with memory, truth, justice and reparations.