Start Date

11-8-2017 3:30 PM

Keywords

the erased residents of Slovenia, human rights violation, victimhood, nationalism

Abstract

In 1992, during the process of gaining national independence, the Slovenian government unlawfully erased 25,671 individuals, mainly citizens of other republics of former Yugoslavia,from the Slovenian Register of Permanent Residents. These individuals, who later become known as the erased, became irregular foreigners; nevertheless, many of them continued to live in Slovenia for more than a decade without enjoying basic human rights.

In 2012 the European Court of Human Rights in the case of Kurić and others vs. Republic of Slovenia held unanimously that there had been a violation of the 8th, 13th and 14th Articles of the European Convention on Human rights. Following this judgment, the Slovenian government adopted a compensation scheme for the erased, where it introduced criteria determining conditions for their redress.

Building on this, the paper reflects on the political and legal constructions of victimhood and reveals the elements that constitute the victims of human rights violation. The paper highlights the notions of political loyalty, legal conformity, and territorial attachment as some of the most decisive elements of victimhood. In this manner, it shows that the subjectivity of victims is not defined within the human rights discourse but is grounded in nationalist terms and categories.

The paper exhibits the flexible nature of human rights, confirming that despite their explicit codification in legally binding international law, “universal” human rights often are subservient to nationalist and state-centric discourses.

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Nov 8th, 3:30 PM

Construction of the Victims of Human Rights Violation: The Case of the Erased Residents of Slovenia

In 1992, during the process of gaining national independence, the Slovenian government unlawfully erased 25,671 individuals, mainly citizens of other republics of former Yugoslavia,from the Slovenian Register of Permanent Residents. These individuals, who later become known as the erased, became irregular foreigners; nevertheless, many of them continued to live in Slovenia for more than a decade without enjoying basic human rights.

In 2012 the European Court of Human Rights in the case of Kurić and others vs. Republic of Slovenia held unanimously that there had been a violation of the 8th, 13th and 14th Articles of the European Convention on Human rights. Following this judgment, the Slovenian government adopted a compensation scheme for the erased, where it introduced criteria determining conditions for their redress.

Building on this, the paper reflects on the political and legal constructions of victimhood and reveals the elements that constitute the victims of human rights violation. The paper highlights the notions of political loyalty, legal conformity, and territorial attachment as some of the most decisive elements of victimhood. In this manner, it shows that the subjectivity of victims is not defined within the human rights discourse but is grounded in nationalist terms and categories.

The paper exhibits the flexible nature of human rights, confirming that despite their explicit codification in legally binding international law, “universal” human rights often are subservient to nationalist and state-centric discourses.