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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The UN Basic Principles and Guidelines on the Right to a Remedy and Reparation: a landmark or window-dressing? An analysis with special attention to the situation of indigenous peoples
Author:Desmet, EllenISNI
Periodical:South African Journal on Human Rights
Geographic terms:Africa
South Africa
Subjects:indigenous peoples
group rights
international agreements
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/19962126.2008.11864942
Abstract:The growing international responsiveness to the rights of victims materialized in 2005 in the UN Basic Principles and Guidelines on the Right to a Remedy and Reparation for the Victims of Gross Violations of International Human Rights Law and Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law (BPGs). An analysis of the BPGs and their potential to uphold the rights of indigenous people in Africa in general and South Africa in particular leads to a nuanced conclusion. On the one hand, the BPGs significantly contribute to strengthening victims' rights, as they adopt a victim-oriented perspective and provide a structured enunciation of their rights. They may inspire the African human rights system and national states in the development of their jurisprudence and policy on remedies. On the other hand, the expert text has been substantially weakened during the intergovernmental consultations. In some aspects, the BPGs even fall short of their intention to uphold international standards. Looking at the instrument through indigenous peoples' eyes unveils some specific deficiencies. Particularly regrettable is the reluctance of States to incorporate provisions concerning collective rights, whereas it is essential for indigenous peoples to be able to file a collective claim and receive reparation collectively. The challenges for the future lie in the implementation of the BPGs within national legal systems and in a further strengthening of the international norms on victims' rights. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]