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Memorialising atrocity crimes face challenges: discussion

Staff Correspondent | Published: 23:54, Sep 19,2020

 
 

The communities and countries who endured atrocity crimes face challenges to memorialise them as the perpetrators always try to destroy the evidences, speakers at a webinar said.

They said that legal actions against the perpetrators could bring relief in the minds of the victims and survivors of the atrocities, but the communities are mostly far from getting justice.

The Centre for the Study of Genocide and Justice, Liberation War Museum, in collaboration with Transitional Justice Asia Network and Asia Justice and Rights, organised the webinar on ‘Memorialising Atrocity Crimes: Experiences from Philippines, Timor Leste, Aceh and Bangladesh’.

LWM trustee Mofidul Huq said that the truths of the atrocity crimes are unearthed through memorialising them and that the activists and the victims would have to do continuous struggle to do so.

Sharing the experiences of Bangladesh, LWM’s CSGJ coordinator Naureen Rahim said that Bangladesh has memorials in all the districts but the symbolic sites such as permanent or ephemeral constructed monuments carrying the names of the victims, renamed streets, buildings or infrastructure were male oriented and mostly were memorialised on private initiatives.

She said that that country had so many mass graves but they were not properly identified and the identified ones were mostly identified by private initiatives while organisations including Ghatok Dalal Nirmul Committee and Projanmo Ekattor were working to memorialising the atrocities.

Naureen said that media like sculpture, museums, songs and dramas, literature, films, symbolic architecture, video games, stamps and plaques are used to memorialise the atrocities through which the new generations can know the history of the country.

Moderated by Alternative Law Groups programme officer Rene Clemente from Philippines, Asossiasaun Chega! ba Ita director Manuela Leong Pereira from Timor Leste and KontraS Aceh programme manager Faisal Hadi from Aceh shared their experiences in memorialising atrocity crimes in their respective countries.

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