Avoiding amnesty in the age of accountability: Colombia’s proposal for alternative sentencing

Lucía E. M. Savini

Abstract


One of the more conspicuous symptoms of the anti-impunity movement in transitional justice is a growing objection towards the use of amnesty. While international standards are slowly but surely building a legal barricade to prevent amnesty and impunity, states are searching for alternative measures capable of persuading hostile actors to demobilize. One promising solution to this is Colombia’s proposal for prosecutions accompanied by alternative sentencing under the Marco Jurídico de la Paz, which aims to demobilize the guerillas and end a 50-year conflict. But for this proposal to be a genuine alternative to amnesty rather than a political attempt to avoid international legal obligations, it must satisfy victims’ requirements for truth, justice and reparations. This paper examines the potential use of alternative sentencing as a mechanism of transitional justice within the scope of the “age of accountability”.

Received: 31 March 2015
Accepted: 15 October 2015
Published online: 11 December 2017


Keywords


amnesty; transitional justice; accountability; impunity; Colombia; FARC; truth; justice; reparations; alternative sentences

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18543/aahdh-13-2015pp125-158

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