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Report of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) on the Findings of Community Consultations on Transitional Justice (TJ) with Victims and Affected Populations in the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia

From July 2022 to March 2023, the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) conducted 15 consultations on transitional justice (TJ) in Afar, Amhara, Harari, Oromia, Somali, and Tigray regions, and in Dire Dawa city administration. A total of 805 participants (319 women and 486 men) who constitute victims and families of victims, internally displaced persons (IDPs), persons with disabilities (PWDs), traditional and religious leaders, and grass root civil society organizations (CSOs) working on human rights and peacebuilding took part in the consultations. A separate national consultation was also conducted with religious leaders.

The consultations aimed to document the views and aspirations of some Ethiopians on TJ and bring their voices, based on lived experiences to decision-making processes, including in the ongoing development of a national TJ policy, while raising awareness about TJ concepts and processes at local levels. The consultations were also aimed at contributing to the promotion of a genuine, participatory, inclusive, gender-sensitive, and victim-centred TJ process, in line with international human rights standards.

The information was collected and analysed through diverse methods, including key informant interviews, focus group and plenary discussions, and desk analysis and review. Interactions were guided by the principles of ‘do no harm’, independence, impartiality, confidentiality, and objectivity. Checklists and tools were designed to promote meaningful engagement of all participants being mindful of their specific needs (notably in terms of language, literacy, and degrees of ability/disability). Gender considerations were also mainstreamed throughout the planning and consultation processes: 44 separate focus group discussions were organised across all the abovementioned locations for women to freely share their experiences and needs. Prior to conducting in-depth discussions on the various aspect of TJ components, EHRC and OHCHR held sensitisation sessions on basic human rights and TJ concepts.