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Reconciliation and Amnesty Law

Reconciliation and Amnesty Law

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Published by CFC Cimicweb
National reconciliation, general amnesty and national stability law (Amnesty Law)
causes national and international protest. The Amnesty Law, which quietly made its way
into Afghan law earlier this year has caused reactions both domestically and internationally. This document is intended to provide an overview of relevant information in Afghanistan from 01 - 31 March 2010.
National reconciliation, general amnesty and national stability law (Amnesty Law)
causes national and international protest. The Amnesty Law, which quietly made its way
into Afghan law earlier this year has caused reactions both domestically and internationally. This document is intended to provide an overview of relevant information in Afghanistan from 01 - 31 March 2010.

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Categories:Types, Research, Law
Published by: CFC Cimicweb on Sep 12, 2011
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08/11/2013

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Issue 03/10 01 April 2010
 AFGHANISTANDevelopments in Justice & ReconciliationMarch 2010
 Ann-Kristin Otto
 –
Justice & Reconciliation KM(ann-kristin.otto@cimicweb.org)  (www.cimicweb.org) 
This document is intended to provide an overview of relevant Justice and Reconciliation developments in Afghanistan from 01 - 31 March 2010. More comprehensive information is available on the Civil-Military Overview (CMO) at www.cimicweb.org.
 
Hyperlinks to original source material are highlighted in blue and underlined in the embedded text.
 
Reconciliation and Amnesty LawNational Reconciliation, General Amnesty and National Stability Law (Amnesty Law)Causes National and International Protest.
The Amnesty Law, which quietly made its wayinto Afghan law earlier this year (for details on the law and its lawmaking process refer toCFCJustice & Reconciliation Report 02/10), has caused reactions both domestically and internationally.The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Norah Niland called on the Afghangovernment torepeal the law saying the blanket amnesty it provides is likely to undermine reconciliation efforts since it would prevent Afghanistan from dealing with its past and movingforward. International aid groups such as Care International have warned that the law will further diminish the confidence Afghans have in the central government in addition to the politicalprogress the country has made up to this point.
International Crisis Group (ICG) 
analysts Nick Grono and Candace Rondeaux published an article inthe
International 
 
Herald Tribune (IHT) 
suggesting that current reconciliation initiatives are aworrying sign that peace talks take precedence over justice for both the Afghan government and the international community. The authors cite the arrest of Mullah Baradar as an example of how
many actors interpret the recent arrest differently but none consider Baradar’s involvement in war
crimes and numerous other atrocities nor have any made efforts to bring him to justice. The
ICG 
 analysts say that the international community has been silent on the recent Amnesty law and is
failing to link reconciliation with accountability which is necessary to confront Afghanistan’s culture
 
of impunity. Grono and Rondeaux also discuss Afghanistan’s membership in the
InternationalCriminal Court (ICC) through which Afghan war criminals could be prosecuted. Amnesty laws arenot effect
ive against prosecutions by the ICC and the Court’s prosecutor Luis Moreno
-Ocampo iscurrently considering opening a formal investigation into Afghan war crimes over the last seven
1
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 2
years, the authors write. The
ICG 
analysts urge Pakistan to hand over Mullah Baradar to the ICC if an arrest warrant was to be sought and call on both Kabul and the international community tosupport such a move to show the Afghan society that there is a limit to impunity.
Reconciliation Initiatives Under Scrutiny.
Ongoing reconciliation initiatives by the Afghangovernment are coming increasingly under scrutiny. US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates told theUS Congress that thetiming was not right to approach the Taliban leadership with negotiation offers, since more military pressure is needed to weaken the insurgency and convince Talibanleaders that they are losing the war, reports the
Washington Times 
. Gates said he was doubtfulwhether the Taliban leadership was willing to make a deal at this point, because they still think they are winning the war. The same article quotes Admiral Mike Mullen warning of creating too
much optimism with reconciliation prospects saying that the Afghan war is “not going to endrapidly.” 
Kimberly Kagan of theInstitute for the Study of War and Frederick W. Kagan of the American Enterprise Institute published an article in the
Wall Street Journal (WSJ) 
calling on the Afghangovernment and the international community to avoid creating national programmes in search of 
 “some elusive grand bargain” that ignore local grievances and bypass smalle
r initiatives. Kaganand Kagan find that the current reconciliation efforts are likely to lead to a temporary resolution of the conflict rather than enduring stability. The current initiatives could result in renewed civil warand surpass long-term strategic objectives, they write. While the reconciliation initiative presentedat the London Conference focuses on the Taliban and other armed opposition groups, the authors stress that a lasting settlement will only be found when the efforts address the grievances of localPashtun communities, which do not identify with the Taliban. Those grievances include corruptionand a central government that is often seen as unjust; while it also imposes administrative officialson communities. Kagan and Kagan write that the grievances fuel passive support for the armedopposition and call on the international forces to play a mediating role between the localcommunities and the Afghan government.
Detainee Issues Afghan Death Row Prisoners Cause Political Stir in Kabul
. A delegation of Afghanlawmakers returning from a trip to Iran denounced the number of Afghan prisoners havingreceiveddeath sentences for drug trafficking and other criminal activities in Iran,
Radio Free Europe (RFE) 
reports. According to the delegation, 5,630 Afghans are in Iranian prisons and morethan 3,000 of the detainees are sentenced to the death penalty. The
RFE 
report quotes an Afghanprisoner who claims to have been sentenced to death after he was arrested with 200 to 300 gramsof narcotics along the Iranian-Afghan border. Iran has an approximately 1,000 km-long borderwith Afghanistan and suffers from one of the highest drug addiction rates in the world, accordingto theUN World Drug Report.
2
Nearly one million Afghan refugees officially live in Iran butunofficial numbers are likely to be much higher due to a vast number of undocumented refugees
2
According the the 
rt 2009,Iran has an estimated 0.7 to 1.6 million drug-addicts and anestimated 2.8% of the population uses opiates. See page 53.

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