UK decision to try suspected war criminals from as far back as 1991 a 'welcome step' says Amnesty

Amnesty International today welcomes the UK Government’s decision to amend UK law to enable to bring to justice those suspected of committing genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity retrospectively from 1 January 1991. Prior to this only those suspected of committing these crimes after 2001 could be tried, therefore excluding suspects involved in conflicts in Rwanda and former Yugoslavia.

Amnesty International UK’s Senior Advocacy Officer, Allan Hogarth said:

“Today’s announcement by the government is a welcome step in the right direction but isn’t the end of the matter. It now means that those who are suspected of involvement in the Rwandan genocide and are living in the UK can now be pursued in the British courts.

“This is a positive development and sends a strong warning signal to others who are currently seeking to evade justice here in the UK that Britain is serious about no longer providing haven for suspected war criminals.

“However, it is now important that the government addresses other loopholes so that those visiting the UK can also be held accountable.

“The government has made significant progress today to bring an end to impunity for those who’ve avoided the courts for so many years here in the UK. But more needs to be done in order that no one escapes justice.”

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