El Salvador: Torturers May Meet Their Victims

In an unusual, and brave move,

El Salvador’s Supreme Court has struck down a 1993 amnesty law enacted after the country’s devastating civil war, clearing the way for possible prosecutions of war crimes at the risk of reopening old wounds.

The amnesty has contributed to more than two decades of impunity for crimes committed during the 1980-1992 civil war, which claimed 75,000 lives. It helped end the conflict between the government and leftist guerillas, but it has blocked access to justice and reparations for victims.

The court’s constitutional chamber ruled 4 to 1 Wednesday that the amnesty violates international law and El Salvador’s constitution. The ruling said the government has an obligation to “investigate, identify and sanction the material and intellectual authors of human rights crimes and grave war crimes” and to provide reparations to victims.  Washington Post

If what happened during those years is hazy, or has been swamped by more recent atrocities, a short excerpt from a collection by courageous reporter, Martha Gellhorn, then in her 80s, is just below.

What Hands, Susan Meiselas, 1980

White Hands, Susan Meiselas, 1980

For a portfolio of Magnum photos see here.

A Daily Mail, 2013 article about the abducted children.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.