Transitional justice and political order in Rwanda

Journal article

Loyle, Cyanne (2017) Transitional justice and political order in Rwanda, Ethnic and Racial Studies. DOI: 10.1080/01419870.2017.1366537.

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The gacaca transitional justice process in Rwanda has strong proponents and sharp critics. At the core of these critiques is the argument that gacaca has been used by the government in Rwanda to consolidate political power around a single narrative of the conflict and the dominant political party. This article advances this critique by arguing that it was not simply the implementation of gacaca which was used for a specific political purpose, but rather the process itself which was structured in a way to consolidate political order for the Rwandan Patriotic Front government. Through the Rwanda case, this article advances an understanding of transitional justice adoption which focuses on the ways in which governments use transitional justice as a tool of political order. Within this framework, transitional justice is adopted to address security, resource, and legitimacy challenges for a post-conflict or post-transition government.

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