Digitalization for truth in Argentina

28 May 2014 by Luciana Bertoia, Buenos Aires (Argentina)

At the end of October last year, Argentina’s Defence Minister Agustín Rossi received a phone call from Mario Callejo, the head of the Argentine Air Force, to tell him important news. During a clean up of the cellar of the Condor building – the Air Force headquarters – two strongboxes and several shelves packed with dusty papers were discovered, containing 280 minutes of meetings held during the former dictatorship.

Stella Segado, the head of the Defense ministry’s  Human Rights office, rushed to the building along with a group of colleagues. Amazed by the find, they immediately decided to start analyzing the documents, Segado explained to IJT. This was one of the most important archive discoveries since the return of democracy to the country. Five months later, on the 38th anniversary of the last military coup, President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner’s administration created a virtual platform, archivosabiertos.com, to make the minutes available for public consultation. 

“We did not hesitate. We wanted people to have access to the documents,” Segado says. “The digitalization of the files is an important step forward, but the website still needs improvement, and surfing through the archives should be more straightforward” comments Lorena Balardini, coordinator of the archival research team at the Centre for Legal and Social Studies (CELS), a prominent Argentina’s human rights organization. 

Want to read more?

If you subscribe to a free membership, you can read this article and explore our full archive, dating back to 1997.

Subscribe now

Related articles

article
19 February 2007 by Laetitia Grotti

One year ago on January 6, 2006, the 17 members of Morocco's Equity and Reconciliation Commission (IER) were closing up shop after submitting their final report to King Mohammed VI. The Moroccan truth commission had received a flood of compliments from the international community praising the recommendations in its report, especially those advocating legislative and constitutional reforms. One year later, however, the results have been rather mixed.

article
11 September 2006 by our correspondent in Arusha

After having tried high-ranking officers, ministers, businessmen, priests, journalists, local officials and militiamen, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) is in uncharted waters. On September 11, the most famous rwandese troubadour of his generation will stand trial for genocide. 

article
23 October 2006 by Christine Chaumeau

China is keeping a polite distance from international criminal justice. Beijing is hardly disinterested, but China does want to make sure that these new global mechanisms are not going to infringe upon its sovereignty by delving into particularly sensitive cases such as Tibet. 

article
United Nations Operation in Burundi disarms rebel forces in Mbanda in February 2005 (Photo: Flickr/UN Photo/Martine Perret)
03 June 2015 by Janet H. Anderson, The Hague (The Netherlands)

Over the last month, Burundi has hit the headlines as the president put himself forward to be elected for a controversial third term, resulting in street protests, thousands of refugees who fled instability and an attempted coup. Behind the issues of elections and constitutionalism are also those of justice following Burundi’s long-running civil war. The international community supported an intensive process of negotiation and the signing of the Arusha Accord in 2000. But in the decade and a half since, its provisions on justice have been debated though never fully implemented.

article
06 November 2006 by Pierre Hazan

France's attitude towards international criminal justice is marked by ambiguity. Paris subscribes to a vision of the world in which international humanitarian law is considered a way to curb violence against civilian populations, but at the same time it is wary of an unchecked judicial system that could end up prosecuting French soldiers engaged in areas where it has old and deep-rooted interests.