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The Bare Minimum!

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Access to an Effective Remedy and Reparations for Civilian Victims of Armed Drone Strikes

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For more content, see Helsinki Monitor.

In the international arena there are some encouraging developments in relation to accountability and transparency for the use of armed drones. It is increasingly recognized that remote pilotless aircraft have become part of modern warfare, and that sometimes they are also used outside the context of armed conflict. Subsequently, both international humanitarian and human rights law can apply. The issue of access to justice, however, receives less explicit socio-political attention. Victims of armed remote pilotless aircraft strikes meet countless challenges in effectuating their right to an effective remedy. Often even a formal recognition that a strike has taken place is lacking. Furthermore, the states involved fail to publicly release information about their own investigations. This makes it difficult for those affected to substantiate their status as a victim and seek justice, including reparations. The international community should, in addition to urging involved states to independently and impartially investigate all armed drone strikes, ensure that access to an effective remedy for civilian victims, whether on an international, transnational or national level, becomes a reality.

Affiliations: 1: Head of the Political Affairs and Press Office of Amnesty International Dutch section, Senior-Researcher/Lecturer at the Centre for Terrorism and Counterterrorism of the Faculty Campus The Hague, Leiden University, ; 2: Volunteer at the Political Affairs Office of Amnesty International Dutch section


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