During political transitions following periods of violence or repression, societies face the burdensome legacy left by the massive human rights violations committed in the past and seek to provide both judicial and non-judicial responses to them. These responses may include programs for distributing reparations to victims, implementing mechanisms to investigate the truth of the abuses, judicial prosecutions, the reform of institutions involved in the repression such as the police, and the removal of public administration oﬃcials responsible for human rights violations from their posts. In implementing these transitional justice mechanisms, societies are paying increasing attention to women victims, recognizing that modern violence aﬀects a growing number of women and girls, and that it aﬀects people diﬀerently depending on their social positions and their diverse roles in society.
Morocco was the ﬁrst country in the Arab region to follow this path when it decided to confront the consequences of political violence and serious human rights violations committed after the country’s independence in 1956. Initially, in 1999 Morocco established the Independent Arbitration Commission (IIA: l’Instance indépendante d’arbitrage), mandated to provide compensation to the victims of past violations before establishing, in 2004, the Equity and Reconciliation Commission (IER: l’Instance équité et réconciliation) with the much broader mandate to investigate serious and systematic human rights violations and make recommendations on the prevention of further violations. The IER sought to introduce a gender perspective to its approach.
As Morocco is presently implementing a series of recommendations by the IER, we consider it timely to examine the process of integrating a gender perspective in these transitional justice mechanisms so as to identify good practices that may be of interest to the national actors involved in following up on the recommendations and to cast light on comparative international experiences.