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Buffalo Human Rights Law Review

Authors

Nicole Dicker

First Page

77

Document Type

Article

Abstract

Overall in Solomon Islands, foreign aid donors have neither engaged effectively with transitional justice itself nor leveraged transitional justice in support of broader development outcomes. Transitional justice in Solomon Islands responds to the five-year period of violent civil conflict, the Tensions, which devastated the Pacific Island nation of Solomon Islands from 1998 to 2003. The Tensions resulted in the deaths of an estimated 200 people and left some 35,000 people displaced; many suffered abductions, illegal detentions, torture and ill-treatment, sexual violence, and property violations. To remedy past human rights abuses, several transitional justice measures have been implemented in Solomon Islands, with varying degrees of success. Transitional justice has been an area of significant foreign aid donor engagement in Solomon Islands, though only limited analysis has been conducted on the issue.

The recent transition of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands ("RAMSI") on June 30, 2013 invites critical reflection of the effectiveness of aid directed to Solomon Islands over the ten-year period spanning RAMSI's mandate, 2003-2013. The nature and extent of RAMSI's engagement with transitional justice is contemplated. Further, the unofficial release of the Solomon Islands Truth and Reconciliation Commission's ("TRC") report in 2013 sets up the TRC as ripe for discussion. Since the TRC was largely donor funded, it follows that the effectiveness of this aid be considered so as to learn from this experience. The intention is to understand the degree to which effective transitional justice aid leads to more effective and "development-sensitive" transitional justice measures.

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