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September 11th of this year marks 40 years since General Augusto Pinochet’s brutal overthrow of democracy in Chile. Due to the enormous efforts of a community of legal, cultural and human rights activists who strove to hold Pinochet accountable for his crimes, the concept of international justice took giant steps forward.
The startling culmination of this work was Pinochet’s arrest in London on October 16, 1998, - a transformative day in the history of the international human rights movement. The Law Lords subsequently threw out the defense of sovereign immunity for the most heinous crimes against humanity. The CCR case “Horman vs. Kissinger” and National Security Archive’s work to declassify documents, brought to the surface the insidious role of the US Government in support of Pinochet’s coup. Various international attempts to arrest Kissinger and Judge Guzman’s efforts to question Kissinger about the Horman case, marked enormous changes regarding an international desire to examine the United States’ role and its accountability for human rights crimes. The judicial process against Pinochet in Chile marked another first for international human rights: the precedence-setting prosecution of a living dictator in his own country.
Eleven years ago the movie Missing was honored on its 20th anniversary for its international impact informing the world of human rights crimes committed by Pinochet. This year on September 9th, the Charles Horman Truth Foundation will recognize the synergy between consciousness-raising movies and the legal progress itself, by inviting the 2002 awardees for the movie Missing and other documentary filmmakers and artists to present the awards at our Tribute to Justice.
At this event the Foundation will acknowledge and honor a handful of people whose courage, conviction and persistence serve as a reminder that the dedicated few can embolden the many to change the world for the better. The event will pay tribute to the fight to expose Pinochet’s Human Rights Crimes internationally, and to prosecute those crimes in court where possible. We also will recognize and celebrate the tireless work over four decades of the Chile Solidarity Community, of which we are all proud participants.
So please join us that day.
Proceeds from this benefit will fund annual conferences on Universal Jurisdiction, an historical web site for educational reference, and will also support additional costs of prosecution when the Horman/Teruggi case goes to court in Chile this year.
Ticketing details will follow in May.