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OHCHR and transitional justice
Ensuring accountability for perpetrators of serious crimes and other gross violations of human rights, and providing remedy for victims and affected communities are obligations under international law. Justice is also essential for prevention, which is key to sustaining peace and development.
States shall undertake prompt, thorough, independent and impartial investigations of alleged violations and take appropriate measures in respect of the perpetrators by ensuring that those responsible for serious crimes under international law are prosecuted, tried and duly punished.
A victim of a gross violation of international human rights law or a serious violation of international humanitarian law shall have equal access to an effective judicial remedy as provided for under international law. Other remedies available to the victim may include access to truth-seeking mechanisms, restorative justice measures, administrative and other bodies, mechanisms, modalities, and proceedings conducted under domestic law.
In addition to individual access to justice, States should endeavor to develop procedures to allow groups of victims to present claims and receive reparation for the harm suffered.
Most recently, OHCHR has supported the Specialized Chambers in Tunisia and the Special Jurisdiction for Peace in Colombia.