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About this book

This book explores the potential responsibilities to respect, protect and fulfill international human rights law (IHRL) of a particular class of non-state actors: non-governmental organizations (NGOs). It calls for NGOs pursuing development to respect and fulfill the human right of genocide survivors to reparative justice in Rwanda. It argues that NGOs have social and moral responsibilities to respect and fulfill IHRL, and for greater accountability for them to do so. The book focuses on those NGOs advancing development in a post genocide transitional justice context acting simultaneously in partnership with state governments, as proxies and agents for these governments, and providing essential public goods and social services as part of their development remit. It defines development as a process of expanding realization of social, economic, and cultural rights addressing food security, economic empowerment/poverty reduction, healthcare, housing, education, and other fundamental human needs while integrating these alongside the expansion of freedoms and protections afforded by civil and political rights. It uses post genocide Rwanda as a case study to illustrate how respect and fulfillment of the IHRL pertaining to reparative justice are hindered by failing to hold NGOs responsible for IHRL. Consequently, this results in discrimination against, marginalization, and the disadvantaging of survivors of the Rwandan genocide against the Tutsi and violations of their human rights.

Table of Contents

Frontmatter

Chapter 1. Introduction

Abstract
This introductory chapter provides an overview of the book’s core research question: what are the potential responsibilities to respect, protect, and fulfill international human rights law (IHRL) of a particular class of non-state actors: non-governmental organizations (NGOs)? The chapter explains the book’s focus on those NGOs pursuing development in a post-genocide transitional justice context acting simultaneously in partnership with state governments, as proxies and agents for these governments, and providing essential public goods and social services as part of their development remit. It discusses the power and resources of NGOs and historical and contemporary NGO human rights failures globally, and the need for a soft law framework for human rights accountability for NGOs. It provides a preliminary discussion of the NGO sector in Rwanda and its failures to respect, protect, and fulfill the human rights of Rwanda’s Tutsi population and of survivors of the Rwandan genocide against the Tutsi. It illustrates the resulting disadvantage and marginalization Rwandan genocide survivors face as a consequence of this neglect.
Noam Schimmel

Chapter 2. Defining Reparative Justice and Global Examples of Its Implementation

Abstract
This chapter provides definitions of reparative and restorative justice and situates them in the context of the Rwandan genocide against the Tutsi. It provides an overview of global examples of reparative justice and programs of reparations implemented by various countries in response to mass human rights violations and mass atrocity such as Germany, Morocco, Argentina, and Chile. It discusses the vulnerability and human rights violations genocide survivors in Rwanda face today and in the 26 years since the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi. It critically explores concepts such as retributive justice, reconciliation, and forgiveness from the perspective of genocide survivors and advances a theory of reparative justice that is survivor centered. It discusses the gap between UN proclamations calling for assistance to genocide survivors and the lack of respect and fulfillment of these proclamations by the UN, its agencies, and member states. It illustrates how the Trust Fund of the International Criminal Court provides a framework for reparative justice for survivors of egregious human rights abuses and mass atrocity.
Noam Schimmel

Chapter 3. Treaty Law for States, Soft Law Addressing Non-State Actors, and the Human Rights Responsibilities of NGOs

Abstract
This chapter discusses treaty law and soft law addressing the human rights responsibilities of non-state actors and of NGOs, and in particular, how they relate to the human right to reparative justice. It provides a definition of reparative justice based on the UN Basic Principles and Guidelines on the Right to Remedy and Reparation with their five core principles—restitution, compensation, rehabilitation, satisfaction, and guarantees of non-repetition—and examines the meaning of each of these principles. It discusses case law from the Inter-American Court of Human Rights that grounds reparative justice obligations in international human rights law. It discusses how the Universal Declaration of Human Rights provides soft law guidance affirming the social and moral responsibilities of non-state actors including NGOs to respect and fulfill human rights. It discusses how legally binding UN treaty law affirms the right to reparative justice. It examines voluntary frameworks for NGO ethical and human rights accountability such as the Code of Conduct of the International Red Cross and their limitations of efficacy and reliability.
Noam Schimmel

Chapter 4. How International Human Rights Law Potentially Applies to Development NGOs in a Post-Mass Atrocity Context Working in Partnership with/as Proxies of States

Abstract
This chapter examines how international human rights law potentially applies to development NGOs working as proxies for governments in the provision of social services. It details the intricate relationship NGOs have with states and how increasingly they act as implementing agents of the state globally, and therefore have corresponding human rights responsibilities. It explores the power and resources that NGOs have and the extent to which they can influence development policy and implementation in a way that either advances the respect and fulfillment of human rights or violates and denies them. It uses the framework David Karp creates for the human rights responsibilities of corporations and illustrates how this can apply to NGOs. It shows that many reputable NGOs, such as Oxfam and Save the Children, have exhibited problematic human rights policies and practices. It argues that they need to be held to account and their policies and practices urgently improved. It further provides evidence that NGOs cannot rely exclusively on self-regulation because it is insufficient to ensure the respect and fulfillment of human rights.
Noam Schimmel

Chapter 5. Rwanda Case Study

Abstract
This chapter focuses on Rwanda as a case study and provides a survivor-centered perspective and discussion of the human rights challenges Rwandan genocide survivors face. It discusses both the institutional and individual perspective of Rwandan genocide survivors on how best to respect, protect, and fulfill their human rights and human dignity in partnership with them and with sensitivity to principles of fairness, equity, justice, and freedom. It discusses Rwanda’s national government agency devoted to advancing the welfare of genocide survivors, FARG. It critiques FARG for significant failures to advance the human rights of genocide survivors in a substantive, comprehensive, timely, and inclusive way that reflects survivor rights to participation and reparation and to education, housing, healthcare, and economic support, and vocational training to alleviate poverty and empower survivors to generate income. It provides suggestions on how FARG can improve its respect and fulfillment of the human rights of genocide survivors and how NGOs can play a critical role in contributing to advancing the rights and welfare of Rwanda’s genocide survivors. It illustrates how prominent development NGOs in Rwanda such as CARE, Oxfam, World Vision, and Save the Children are failing to respect and fulfill the human rights of genocide survivors and provides examples of other NGOs, in contrast, such as ActionAid, that show respect for the human rights of genocide survivors and should serve as a model for other development NGOs in Rwanda.
Noam Schimmel

Chapter 6. Conclusion

Abstract
This chapter provides a summary of this book and discusses the organizations and individuals who have endorsed reparative justice for Rwandan genocide survivors and quotes directly from genocide survivors who have benefitted from development programs that advance their welfare and from leaders of community-based survivor organizations calling for greater respect and fulfillment of the right to reparative justice of Rwandan genocide survivors. Those endorsing the rights of genocide survivors to reparative justice include the Network of International Non-Governmental Organizations in Rwanda, the East African Community, and individuals who have served in the past and present in Rwandan government agencies and ministries. It reaffirms the need for international human rights soft law that will be held as a standard by which NGOs should be held accountable for human rights respect and fulfillment because their current systems of voluntary self-regulation are insufficient and dysfunctional. It shows that with a reasonable and substantive financial commitment to reparative justice, NGOs and the Rwandan government could dramatically transform the lives of Rwandan genocide survivors and respect, protect, and fulfill their human rights, and specifically, their right to reparative justice.
Noam Schimmel

Backmatter

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