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Speeches in Signing of Agreements

Signing of Institutional Cooperation Agreement

Words by CVR President

Ambassador Arné Rodin,
UNDP representative Kim Bolduc
Ladies and gentlemen,

We know well now that democracy cannot take root and become consolidated in society if there is no minimum acceptable degree of justice in it. Among other things, this means that when a society that has experienced acute violence processes wishes to carry out a real democratic transition it must, among its inescapable obligations, restore justice that was relegated in the years before. In many cases, this implies to begin by elementary activities, which are at the same time complex, such as recovering truth regarding human rights transgression and abuse generally committed against the most helpless, vulnerable and humble members of society. Democracy cannot be built upon indifference or oblivion.

By virtue of this, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission knows it can trust in the understanding and support of important democracies in the world. Thanks to them, complying the tasks the State and Peruvian society have charged it with is not chimerical, but a very real possibility.

As we know, our mandate, a large and complex one, is referred to an essential issue, restoring justice in our country concerning human rights abuse committed between 1980 and 2000. Of course, we are not to recover judicial justice. It is rather a strict moral content justice that starts by finding out the truth and eventually tends to dignify the victims.

The Swedish government’s generosity expressed in the cooperation agreement with the Truth Commission we sign today strengthens this trust in us. We cannot forget that Swedish democracy has a long and well-known tradition of human rights custody. Its voice to defend the victims of established powers and de facto powers is very recognizable worldwide. Therefore, the generosity with which its diplomatic mission in Lima has received the Truth Commission is not a surprise. This reception is expressed in encouraging words we highly appreciate and also in concrete cooperation activities such as the ones formalized in this agreement.

The Swedish government aid will be useful for carrying out several critical tasks for the compliance of our mission. It will permit us to strengthen our capacity of reaching the Peruvian population with an appeal message and also with our investigation activity.

Our Commission will not be able to comply with its tasks if it does not manage to involve the whole society in its endeavor. Therefore, the support the Swedish government is providing us is particularly valuable for our communication and education activities. By broadening our call and making of our work a participatory activity, we will also be helping to disseminate democratic habits in a country supported on citizen presence and commitment.

Because of all this, I wish to deeply thank the Swedish government represented by its diplomatic mission in Lima on behalf of the Commission. I also wish to particularly thank you, ambassador Rodin, for the warmth with which you have received our projects. The back-up we receive from exemplary democracies such as the one you represent renews our hopes of leading our mission to a good end.

Salomón Lerner Febres
Truth and Reconciliation Commission