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Entry into force of the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance

Joint communiqué issued by the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the French Republic and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Argentina

Paris, Buenos Aires, 23 December 2010 Retour à la table des matières

France and Argentina welcome the entry into force of the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, following the announcement of the 20th ratification. This instrument is the result of a joint initiative to respond to the suffering of the victims of enforced disappearances and their families. To date, 90 States from all continents have pledged to combat enforced disappearances.

France and Argentina have combined their efforts to ensure the adoption by the United Nations of a legally binding international instrument to combat the phenomenon of enforced disappearances.

The Convention establishes a legal definition of enforced disappearance, stipulating that States must include this crime in their domestic legal system. It describes the widespread or systematic practice of enforced disappearance as a "crime against humanity." It bans secret detention centers and strengthens procedural guarantees for putting people into custody.

France and Argentina reaffirm their attachment to the principle of rehabilitation of victims, which provides their families and relatives with the right to compensation and to learn the truth about the circumstances surrounding their disappearance.

Its entry into force marks a historic step in the fight, supported by the human rights organizations and the international community, to promote human dignity and protect the physical and moral integrity of individuals. It also strengthens the essential role of the United Nations as a global organization working for the protection of human rights.

The two countries welcome the increasing support of the international community for this instrument which contributes to the fight against impunity.

France and Argentina will continue to work together towards the universalization of this Convention, as well as towards the recognition by the majority of countries of the legal competence of the Committee on Enforced Disappearances, the body established by the Convention to monitor the implementation of this instrument by the States. The two countries welcome the proclamation by the UN General Assembly of 30 August as International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances.

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