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August 2015
Editor-in-Chief: Nicola Giovannini
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 Highlights

Bahrain: NPWJ and the NRPTT strongly condemn new sham trial against opposition leader Ibrahim Sharif
 

No Peace Without Justice (NPWJ) and the Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational and Transparty (NRPTT) firmly condemn the re-arrest and new sham trial against Bahraini prominent opposition leader Ibrahim Sharif. We express our undiminished solidarity with and support for Mr Sharif, who has consistently called for peaceful protest and advocated for a fair and just democratic political system in Bahrain.
 
The new politically-motivated charges brought by the Ministry of Interior against Mr Sharif show that the Bahraini authorities are determined to persevere in their routine campaign of intimidation and threats. As in the past, these clearly appear to be aimed at silencing any peaceful dissent and nonviolent quest to advance meaningful democratic reform, the rule of law and respect of human rights in the country.
 
It is way past time for the international community to take immediate concrete steps to ensure that Bahrain complies with its obligations under international human rights laws. First and foremost, they must respect and protect the fundamental rights of its citizens. They must release immediately and unconditionally Ibrahim Sharif and all other prisoners of conscience, including the rest of the Bahrain Thirteen and Sheikh Ali Salman, Secretary-General of the country’s largest opposition party al-Wefaq, who was recently sentenced to four years in prison for inciting ‘hatred’ and ‘disobedience’ against the regime.
 
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* Niccolò Figà-Talamanca is Secretary-General of No Peace Without Justice

Necessary, but sufficient? UN Security Council authorises new body to investigate chemical weapons in Syria
 

On 7 August 2015, the United Nations Security Council requested the UN Secretary-General to work with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to establish a Joint Investigative Mechanism to identify those responsible for the use of chemical weapons in Syria, through UNSC Resolution 2235 (2015). This follows the adoption of UNSC Resolution 2118 on 27 September 2013, calling for the elimination of the Syrian chemical weapons program and ongoing attacks in Syria to this day, despite an announcement by OPCW I 2014 that the most lethal chemical weapons stockpile declared by the Syrian regime had been destroyed.
 
This latest Security Council Resolution on Syria is certainly to be welcomed, as it keeps the spotlight on what is happening to ordinary Syrians every day, including a number of cases of indiscriminate use of chemical weapons against civilians. While this is a needed step to back the fight against impunity for Syria, No Peace Without Justice and the Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational and Transparty believe that it is only one step that by itself is insufficient to assure justice.
 
The Resolution sets up the Joint Investigative Mechanism to identify individuals, entities, groups, or governments involved in the use of chemicals as weapons. This is a necessary precursor to holding those individuals, entities, groups and governments accountable, as is stressed in the Resolution’s preamble. But it falls down on saying how that accountability is to be achieved. As NPWJ and the NRPTT have said many times before, the UN Security Council needs to provide leadership to the world in supporting accountability and justice in Syria – we’re afraid that this latest resolution still falls short in that respect.
 
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 Alison Smith is Legal Counsel and Director of the International Criminal Justice Program of No Peace Without Justice

No Peace Without Justice pays tribute to Giovanni Conso’s extraordinary contribution to international justice
 

No Peace Without Justice mourns with great sadness the passing of Giovanni Conso, fomer Minister of Justice and President of the Constitutional Court of Italy. Giovanni Conso dedicated his brilliant skills and knowledge of the law to the service of the institutions and played a key role in advancing international justice, in particular through his decisive commitment to the establishment of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
 
We recall with admiration and respect his passionate contribution to the drafting of the Rome Statute during the Diplomatic Conference in 1998. Human Rights and International Criminal Justice has lost not only a great jurist but also a man with a clear vision of the function of the law as a bulwark of legality and the rule of law in the world.
 
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 NPWJ events

Syria: NPWJ convenes meeting on transitional justice and accountability with Stephen Rapp
 

On 27 July 2015, No Peace Without Justice (NPWJ) and the Orient Policy Center (OPC), together with the Turkish organisation Kirkayak Sanat Merkezi (KSM) and the Syrian organisations Syrian Association for Missing and Conscience Detainees and Euro-Syrian Democratic Forum, organised a private meeting with H.E. Stephen J. Rapp, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues.
 
The meeting, which was held at the NPWJ office in Gaziantep, aimed at gathering together, under a Chatham House rules setting, Syrian and international practitioner of Transitional Justice in Syria to discuss the current perspectives to achieve accountability for the ongoing crimes against humanity and redress for victims as a core element of any lasting political solution to the Syrian war.
 
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 NPWJ on Radio Radicale

NPWJ on Radio Radicale
 

No Peace Without Justice and Radio Radicale, the foremost Italian nationwide all-news radio, have an ongoing partnership to provide news and information on our activities to a broad Italian audience. This partnership features an in-depth weekly program on NPWJ’s current campaigns and activities. The program is broadcast in Italian every Friday morning immediately before the main news summary.

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 NPWJ press releases

Bahrain/Urgent Appeal: Release Prisoner of Conscience Dr Abduljalil al-Singace as Hunger Strike Reaches 160th Day
27 August 2015

Bahrain: NPWJ and the NRPTT strongly condemn new sham trial against opposition leader Ibrahim Sharif
Brussels – Rome, 24 August 2015

Necessary, but sufficient? UN Security Council authorises new body to investigate chemical weapons in Syria
Brussels, Rome – 8 August 2015

No Peace Without Justice pays tribute to Giovanni Conso’s extraordinary contribution to international justice
Rome - Brussels, 3 August 2015

Libya’s missed opportunity: flawed penalties follow flawed trials
Brussels, Rome – 28 July 2015

Conference on the Rule of Law and the Right to Know
Rome, Italian Senate, 27 July 2015

Syria: NPWJ convenes meeting on transitional justice and accountability with Stephen Rapp
Gaziantep, Turkey, 27 July 2015

International Justice Day: NPWJ and NRPTT call for stronger commitment to the fight against impunity
Brussels - Rome - New York, 17 July 2015

 NPWJ in the news


 

A new chance for Cyprus
By Martti Ahtisaari, Emma Bonino, Albert Rohan, and Nathalie Tocci, New Vision, 26 August 2015

Les juges doivent rouvrir l’affaire Kenyatta
CNTV, 20 August 2015

Libia, Appello bipartisan dall’Italia: “Torture inaccettabili per figli Gheddafi”
Termometro Politico, 7 August 2015

Lettera appello dei politici italiani: "Inaccettabili le torture ai Gheddafi"
Il Corriere / TGcom24, 7 August 2015

Sull’Universalità dei Diritti Umani
i Ilaria Nespoli, L'Opinione, 3 August 2015

L’universalità dei diritti umani: per fortuna ci sono i Radicali
Valter Vecellio, Cronache del Garantista, 27 July 2015

Opinion: European Federalism and Missed Opportunities
By Emma Bonino, Inter Press Service (IPS), 24 July 2015

Tra segreto di Stato e Diritto alla conoscenza
di Domenico Letizia, L'Opinione, 23 July 2015

Genocidio di Srebrenica, la Russia di Putin mette il veto all’Onu
Agenzi Radicale, 9 July 2015

Expo: diritti economici della donne in Africa e Mo, Unido li vuole sostenere
ONUITALIA, 7 July 2015

SYRIA: Exhibition of ‘Caesar’ Photographs – “Inside Syrian Authorities’ Prisons”
EurActiv, 7 July 2015

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