Campaigning for the Protection and Promotion of Human Rights, Democracy, the Rule of Law and International Justice
Supporting Libya’s Democratic Transition through Justice and Accountability
Background: Following the Libyan revolution that began in February 2011, there is a clear desire and expectation within Libya for justice and accountability to form part of the backbone of Libya’s transition from dictatorship to democracy. In particular, Libya has to address past violations during the conflict in 2011 (and subsequent events) and during the 42 years of the Gaddafi regime, to support an effective transition from authoritarianism to democracy and the rule of law. To reach these goals, it is important for the nascent Libyan civil society have the capacity and the knowledge necessary to engage effectively with political actors and with grassroots constituencies in the conceptual development and implementation of transitional justice solutions.
NPWJ’s work in Libya: NPWJ has been working on the Libyan transition since early 2011, and we have been on-the-ground since early October (a few weeks before liberation). We have a permanent presence in Tripoli since March 2012, and we have been working to create a network of Libyan actors to engage different sectors of Libyan society on transitional justice.
Our work in Libya combines both the provision of transitional justice information (both in cooperation with the institutions and in partnerships with civil society), including on outreach and documentation, with the research and analysis of public expectations and perceptions.
On the civil society side, we hope to help build and reinforce capacity of Libyan actors to play their role in incorporating accountability, human rights and the rule of law in the democracy transition and post-conflict reconstruction of their country. To that end, NPWJ is working together with Libyan civil society and human rights activists’ to build their knowledge and capacity in addressing transitional justice and to work on accountability processes and to assist the Libyan authorities with their transitional justice work, including the investigation and prosecution of crimes under international law and massive human rights violations.
Our work is also designed to provide a tool through which areas of the country or specific types of violations that are under-represented can be identified and addressed, particularly vulnerable groups such as women, young people and children.
Specific activities: NPWJ is engaging civil society from across the country, partnering with a wide range of organisations, including both more established and emerging ones, who have political vision but still need to strengthen their capacity on transitional justice and on the role they can play.
An informal Steering Committee, comprised of a diverse range of Libyan civil society, including NGOs, academics, lawyers and media, public authorities and opinion-leaders, has been progressively created during these months.
On 24-25 April 2012, the informal Steering Committee held its first meeting. After a day of capacity building and training on transitional justice and reflection on the status of transitional justice efforts in Libya, the informal Steering Committee agreed to a series of actions to move the project forward. These include enlarging and strengthening the Steering Committee and taking steps toward the planning of a national consultation on transitional justice that will permit all Libyans to make known their views on and expectations of transitional justice in their country.
On the institutional side, NPWJ is working with the Ministry of Justice, and its Higher Judicial Training Institute, in providing training and expertise to the prosecutors who have been charged with the enormous task of dealing with those suspected to have committed or directed atrocities during the conflict, and during the previous regime. This is an incredibly difficult work, in part because of the numbers involved, and the fact that national prosecutors are not normally equipped (in any country) with dealing with mass atrocities, and in part because the policy priorities which would normally have direct prosecutions to be focussed only on those who bear the greatest responsibility have not been set uniformly at a political level across the country.
This means there are thousands of victims and also thousands of allegged perpetrators who are in detention, with no realistic possibility for trials that reflect accurately the crime base even of the relatively short conflict, let alone of the previous years of dictatorship.
We've organised a first training of prosecutors earlier in the year, to introduce participants to the basic components of both international and Libyan law as it relates to the atrocities committed, showing the intersections of the legal system and explaining Libya’s international legal obligations; it discussed strategies for collecting and analysing the large quantities of information necessary to successfully prosecute such complex crimes; and it covered a number of important and distinctly practical issues relating to documentary evidence, witnesses, and procedures for dealing with major crimes scenes, such as mass graves.
"Transitional Justice Perspectives in Libya: April 2012"
Zughaid Production in association with No Peace Without Justice
List of specific activities:
- Training on “Forensic investigations in the cases of political violence”, Tripoli, 17-21 March 2013
- Training on “Transitional Justice: The Voice of Libya Youth”, Tripoli, 16-17 March 2013
- Trial monitoring capacity building for Libyan lawyers, Brussels and The Hague, 4-7 March 2013
- Trial monitoring exchanges between Tunisian and Libyan legal professionnals, Tunis, 1-3 March 2013
- Training on Transitional Justice, Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law, Tripoli, Libya, 24-28 February 2013
- Colloquium on” Criminal Justice Procedures and Transitional Justice”, Tripoli, 28 January 2013
- Conference on “Youth and Their Priorities”, Zawia, Libya, 26-27 January 2012
- Training for Judges and Prosecutors, Benghazi, 11-13 December 2012
- Regional Civil Society Strategy Meeting on Transitional Justice, Tripoli, Libya, 16-17 November 2012
- Informal Steering Committee on Transitional Justice, Tripoli, 8 November 2012
- Law Student’s Colloquium Series on Transitional Justice, Tripoli, 17 October 2012
- Civil Society meeting on Transitional Justice, Tripoli, 3 october 2012
- International Criminal Law Colloquium Series, Tripoli, 29 September 2012
- Regional Strategic Meeting on transitional justice, Tripoli 4 September 2012
- First training of Libyan Prosecutors on transitional justice issues, Tripoli, Libya, 26-28 May 2012
- National event to support Libya’s democratic transition through justice and accountability, Tripoli, Libya, 24-25 April 2012
List of publications:
Brochure on Libya and Transitional Justice (Arabic), January 2013
List of press releases:
- 21 Mar 2013 Libya: NPWJ and the High Judicial Institute organise a training on “Forensic investigations in the cases of political violence” Read More
- 17 Mar 2013 Libya’s Youth Make Their Voices Heard on Transitional Justice Read More
- 07 Mar 2013 NPWJ organises a trial monitoring capacity building for Libyan lawyers Read More
- 01 Mar 2013 Tunisia: the Academy on Transitional Justice fosters the exchange of experiences between Libyans and Tunisians Read More
- 28 Feb 2013 Libya: NPWJ and Ministry of Justice work together to foster a culture of accountability Read More
- 11 Feb 2013 Libya: NPWJ supports joint statement by local NGOs calling for a peaceful transition in the anniversary of the revolution Read More
- 29 Jan 2013 Libya: NPWJ fosters dialogue on accountability and criminal justice challenges faced by the legal community Read More
- 27 Jan 2013 Libya: NPWJ calls for youth participation in Transitional Justice at Youth Union Conference in Tripoli Read More
- 14 Dec 2012 No Peace Without Justice organises training in Benghazi in collaboration with the Libyan ministry of justice and the Libyan judges organisation Read More
- 8 Nov 2012 Libya: Informal Steering Committee members meets in Tripoli to discuss outreach strategy on Transitional justice Read More
- 17 Oct 2012 NPWJ convenes Law Student’s Colloquium Series on Transitional Justice in Tripoli Read More
- 03 Oct 2012 Tripoli and Misurata civil society organizations meet to discuss Transitional Justice action plan Read More
- 29 Sep 2012 NPWJ International Criminal Law Colloquium Series starts in Tripoli Read More
- 17 Aug 2012 Tripoli marks a Year since Liberation but Challenges remain Read More
- 25 Jul 2012 After the Elections, What Next for Transitional Justice in Libya? Read More
- 03 Jul 2012 ICC/Libya – NPWJ welcomes release of detained ICC Staff Read More
- 2 Jun 2012 ICC/Libya – Libya Must Immediately Release Detained ICC Staff Read More
- 02 Jun 2012 NPWJ concludes first training of Libyan Prosecutors on transitional justice issues Read More
- 14 May 2012 Libya: supporting the democratic transition through justice and accountability Read More
- 25 Apr 2012 NPWJ promotes national event in Tripoli to support Libya’s democratic transition through justice and accountability Read More
- 17 Mar 2012 NPWJ and NRPTT welcome arrest of Abdullah Senussi, which heralds new potential for justice in Libya Read More
- 07 Jan 2012 Libya should stand up for justice, not grant impunity to President al-Bashir Read More
- 21 Nov 2011 Capture of Abdullah Senussi heralds new potential for justice Read More
- 19 Nov 2011 Libya / Capture of Saif al-Islam: NPWJ calls for fair trial Read More
- 20 Oct 2011 Death of Gaddafi denies justice to victims Read More
- 16 May 2011 NPWJ welcomes Libya arrest warrants’ request: International community must extend full cooperation to the ICC Read More
- 05 May 2011 Second Contact Group meeting on Libya: NPWJ and the NRPTT call for a full support to the ICC Read More
- 03 Mar 2011 NPWJ at Press Conference on Libya and the ICC organised by the CICC Read More
- 7 Feb 2011 NPWJ and the NRPTT welcome Security Council Decision on Libya Read More
- 22 Feb 2011 Security Council Must Act to end Bloodshed in Libya Read More
- 10 Jun 2009 Corte Penale Internazionale: sconfitta l’offensiva diplomatica voluta da Ghedafi e Al-Bashir contro la Corte Read More
- 10 Jun 2009 Gaddafi in Italy: no reward for human rights violations Read More
For further information, please contact: Alison Smith, NPWJ International Criminal Justice Program Coordinator (on firstname.lastname@example.org; + 218 919386116 or +32-(0)2-5483-912), or Stefano Moschini, NPWJ Libya Project Coordinator (on email@example.com or +218 917450375).