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Eur J Psychotraumatol. 2013 May 8;4. doi: 10.3402/ejpt.v4i0.17191. Print 2013.

Gross human rights violations and reparation under international law: approaching rehabilitation as a form of reparation.

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Department of Psychology, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.


The strengthening of international criminal law through an increased focus on the right to reparation and rehabilitation for victims of crimes against humanity represents an important challenge to health professionals, particularly to those in the field of trauma research and treatment. A brief outline of some developments in the field of international law and justice for victims of gross human rights violations is presented, with a focus on the right to reparation including the means for rehabilitation. The fulfillment of this right is a complex endeavor which raises many questions. The road to justice and reparation for those whose rights have been brutally violated is long and burdensome. The active presence of trauma-informed health professionals in this process is a priority. Some of the issues raised within the context of states' obligations to provide and ensure redress and rehabilitation to those subjected to torture and gross human rights violations are discussed, and in particular how rehabilitation can be understood and responded to by health professionals.


Gross human rights violations; redress; rehabilitation; reparation; torture

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