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Spain introducing law to compensate victims of former dictator

[JURIST] The government of Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero [BBC profile] is planning to introduce a new law that will clear victims' names and "correct" trial records in an effort to bring justice to victims of former Spanish dictator General Francisco Franco [Wikipedia profile]. Some 55,000 people were killed during Franco's 36-year regime. Officials plan to reveal the text of the Law of Historical Memory on Friday, three days after the 70th anniversary of the civil war that brought Franco to power.

Though the government has kept a tight lid on the law, the proposal is expected to compensate victims for land seized by the government, increase pension benefits for victims and establish processes to identify those buried in unmarked graves. Spanish political parties agreed to not to speak about the Spanish civil war [Wikipedia backgrounder] after Franco died in 1975 in an effort to facilitate a peaceful transition to democracy. Victims groups had sought judicial recognition that Franco's regime was illegitimate [DPA report], but the law is not expected to include such a provision. EFE has more. The UK Guardian has additional coverage. El Pais has local coverage.

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