Tunisia’s torture victims speak out

Saturday the 17th of December marks the sixth commemoration of Tunisian revolution.  It’s also coincidence that there is a national hearing of the cases involving victims of oppression during the dictatorial regime.

Victims and witnesses of human rights violations are giving their testimonies to the truth and dignity commission to shed light to the harm of dictatorship from 1955 to 2013.

“It is for the history but also it is for the future. Because we are building the future on the mutual understanding, recognition, forgiveness and clear vision of history,” a victim said.

The Truth commission was charged with reviewing cases of past human rights abuses and financial corruption, investigating nearly 60 years of humanitarian violations. The commission has since received more than 62,000 complaints from victims. Before that, it conducted more than 15,000 secret hearings.

The violations includes torture, limitation in freedom of expression, extrajudicial killings,and other more.

According to Reuters, the commission has said the hearings could boost economic investment “because foreign investors will know that Tunisia is dismantling its authoritarian and corrupt system”.

Chair Sihem Ben Sedrine denied that victims had been picked on the basis of party quota and allegiance. “The criteria were rather the truthfulness of facts, the form of abuse, the period of time when violations were committed and the ability of those abused to speak out publicly,” she said.



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