The Truth Commission Campaign Project
May 29, 2013
2011 ALBA/Puffin Human Rights Award winner Baltasar Garzón’s Truth Commission Campaign Project.
The Truth Commission Campaign Project
The Baltasar Garzón International Foundation (FIBGAR) is a non-governmental and non-profit foundation dedicated to promoting human rights and the principles of Universal Jurisdiction. Founded upon the basis, FIBGAR’s mission is to defend victims of international crimes and their rights to truth, justice, and reparation by developing programs for action in different social contexts, including education, culture, politics, and human rights activism.
Through and extensive advocacy work at national and international level, FIBGAR promotes social activism and supports civil society’s initiatives and legal proceedings that ensure the implementation of principles of International Justice.
FIBGAR fosters the creation of a Civil Society Platform called “Plataforma por la Comisión de la Verdad sorb los crímenes del franquismo” that brings together victims associations, experts, and human rights defenders to urge the Spanish Government to establish a Truth Commission that ensures the right of victims of Francoist crimes to know the truth about the events, the circumstances of manner, time, and place, reasons why the crimes were committed, and the whereabouts of persons killed of disappeared.
The UN defines truth commissions as official, temporary, non-judicial fact-finding bodies that investigate a pattern of abuses of human rights or humanitarian law, usually committed over a number of years.
The Amnesty Law in 1977 represents a Full Stop Law the justifies the impunity of serious crimes against life committed by the francoist regime forces as illegal detentions, extrajudicial executions and enforced disappearances, which do amount crimes against humanity under international law, and are thus not subject to amnesty, pardon or prescription.
Establishing a Civil Society Platform: Victim’s Statement
The following statement has emerged from meetings between victims’ association in order to constitute the Platform and urge the Spanish Government to create a Truth Commission on crimes committed during Franco’s regime:
“The right to truth, justice and reparation is a human right of the victims of the most serious crimes: genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. It is the right of those who suffered from enforced disappearance, extrajudicial executions, torture, and exile, committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed or with authorization, support of acquiescence of the State.
In Spain, all there crimes were committed by the cruel dictatorship of Fransico Franco after he took up the power by a military uprising in 1936 against the legitimate government of the Republic. Franco was supported by European countries.
Today, the list of atrocities is still incomplete, the State has not assumed its obligations and duties under international law to respect, protect, and fulfill the right of the victims to truth, justice, and reparation.
The bodies of at least 120,000 people, who disappeared during the civiil war and the subsequent Franco regime, are still awaiting justice in clandestine mass graves throughout Spain.
Families of stolen children are also awaiting justice, 30,000 children abducted by Francoist forces. Their names were changed and they were given in adoption to families supporting the regime. The practice continued to happen until democracy returned. Women also expect justice; they were doubly victimized by their ideas and their condition of being women.
Hundred of thousands of victims detained, tortured, persecuted, exiled, executed in summary trials, subjected to forced labor, are awaiting justice. Today, 35 years after the death of Franco, the State and its courts continue to deny the rights of victims.”