defending rights and civil liberties

Along with international tribunals, such as the International Criminal Court (ICC), national courts play an essential role within the international justice system. Through the principle of Universal Jurisdiction, the courts of any country can and should investigate and prosecute those responsible for international crimes, even if they have been committed outside their territory, regardless of who the perpetrators or victims may be. In fact, due to the limitations and lack of resources of institutions such as the International Criminal Court, Universal Jurisdiction is not only an important mechanism, but absolutely essential in the fight against impunity for the most serious crimes. Thus both victims’ rights as well as of those of the entire international community can be protected.

For decades Spain has pioneered this concept. However, political pressure exerted by governments of countries involved in cases under investigation by Spanish courts led to a legal reform in 2009, restricting the application of the principle of Universal Jurisdiction. This first step led to the 2014 adoption of a reform that seeks to curtail the jurisdiction of Spanish judges in the investigation and prosecution of international crimes.

For more information on Universal Jurisdiction cases in Spain, see Litigation

Publicaciones

  • Derechos de participación de las mujeres refugiadas y exiliadas en el proceso de justicia transicional en Colombia
  • Balance de 2015: Los derechos humanos en España
  • Report to the Human Rights Committee (CCPR) for List of Issues - Spain’s 6th periodic report
  • Carta conjunta a autoridades españoles solicitando que adopten medidas para aplicar las recomendaciones ONU en materia de desapariciones forzadas (sp)
  • Aportaciones al Comité contra la Tortura para la revisión del VI Informe Periódico de España
  • Informe sombra de RIS para el VI examen de España por el Comité de Derechos Humanos
  • Declaración conjunta ante el Consejo de DDHH de la ONU con ocasión de la aprobación del informe del II Examen Periódico Universal de España
  • Hacia un Tratado Multilateral sobre Asistencia Jurídica Mutua y Extradición para juzgamiento local de crímenes internacionales
  • Auto de la Audiencia Nacional archivando investigación vuelos de la CIA y voto particular
  • Comunicación ante la ONU a propósito de la denegación de extradiciones solicitadas por la justicia argentina