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Article

Will U.S. rule for rights of S. Africans?

...[On] Monday,...the U.S. Supreme Court will consider a case that could severely weaken a key legal mechanism...for survivors of abuses such as those that fueled apartheid...Shell Oil is set to argue...that this law cannot be used to hold it accountable...Without legal remedies, violence begets more violence...Shell's attempts to eliminate this [remedy]...is troubling. But what bothers me more is that Shell has misrepresented South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission... Shell argues that the commission shows that human rights victims do not need courts to receive justice, but it sadly misses the point. The truth commission was about victims and perpetrators sitting down, confronting wrongs, and speaking together honestly... The commission provided immunity only to those who confessed their crimes, not to those who maintained they bore no responsibility. Shell's officers and board of directors have shown no willingness to meet with the Nigerian families and ask for forgiveness...If the Supreme Court sides with Shell, it would represent a terrible step backward for human rights. [also refers to Daimler, Ford, IBM, General Motors]

Part of the following stories

Apartheid reparations lawsuits (re So. Africa)

Shell lawsuit (re oil pollution in Nigeria)

US Supreme Ct. hears oral arguments in Kiobel v. Shell Alien Tort Claims Act case - some justices seem to favour narrowing law in human rights cases