Document Type


Publication Date

January 1990

Conference / Event Title

New York Law School Journal of International & Comparative Law


Dedicated to the Memory of Owen M. KupferschmidAs the program indicates, the next panel addresses the issues of punishment, amnesties and pardons. The last ten years have witnessed in Latin America and other regions of the world, transitions from military regimes to democratically elected regimes. This shift has brought a call for a response by the legal systems to the gross abuses of prior military dictatorships and to the massive violations of basic human rights, including disappearances and torture.' This response took the form of trials of military officers in Argentina and other places.2 Amid this call for trials and justice are now heard arguments announcing the need for amnesty, non-punishment and national healing.Instead of each panelist talking about their country's experiences in general, the following questions will be discussed: What did people seek to achieve in the countries where there were trials? What did the trials accomplish? What are the differences between these concepts? What does it mean not to punish? What are the mechanisms other than legal responses? What are the non-national legal responses?