Urge Spain to Investigate Past Human Rights Violations

Target: Prime Minister of Spain Mariano Rajoy

Goal: Allow for crimes against humanity committed during a past dictator’s regime to be investigated and prosecuted.

In 1977, Spain put in place an Amnesty Law to ease the transition between Francisco Franco’s dictatorship and the new government. The Amnesty Law prohibits investigations into any human rights violations that occurred during the Franco regime. In 2009, the United Nations gave a Human Rights Committee recommendation that Spain repeal the 1977 law stating it to be in violation of the international human rights law. Sign this petition and urge Spain to lift the Amnesty Law and allow for Franco-era crimes to be investigated and prosecuted which may finally bring peace to the victims of these crimes.

One of the largest scandals from the Franco regime that is unable to be investigated is the estimated 300,000 babies that were stolen and sold to new families. The BBC reports that these crimes are closely linked with the Catholic Church as Franco put many nuns and priests into prominent roles in hospitals. When “undesirable” parents gave birth–unwed mothers, non-Catholics, or those deemed economically or morally deficient–the nuns and priests would take the newborn away to be “examined” and the parents were later told that the child had died.

This is just one of the many crimes from the Franco-era that have yet to be investigated as Spain refuses to set up a national inquiry into the scandal. However, there are several other crimes, such as the murder and forced disappearances of over 100,000 people, that remain open cases which beg answers and for justice to be served. The U.N. human rights office has recommended that Spain repeal this law as there is no statute of limitations for crimes against humanity. Sign this petition and urge Spain to lift its Amnesty Law.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy,

In 1977, Spain introduced an Amnesty Law so that the nation, which was still sore from Francisco Franco’s dictatorship, could start fresh in a new government. However, as the United Nations recommended in 2009, Spain needs to repeal the Amnesty Law and allow for those crimes against humanity that were committed under Franco to be investigated and prosecuted. Please lift the Amnesty Law and allow for the victims of these crimes to seek justice.

According to international human rights law, there is no statute of limitations for crimes against humanity. Those people affected by Franco-era crimes deserve the right to seek answers and justice, and Spain has a duty to ensure that its citizens have an easy path to seek justice. Please lift the Amnesty Law and allow for victims of these crimes to seek peace.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

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Photo credit: steve_h via Flickr

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