A new website bringing together a rich variety of resources relating to Operation Condor, a transnational campaign of state terror against political activists in Latin America in the 1970s, was launched last month at the Attorney General’s Office in Buenos Aires.
The website, plancondor.org, is the initiative of Departmental Lecturer Francesca Lessa of the Oxford Department of International Development, who has been researching Operation Condor and subsequent efforts to bring those responsible to justice for several years, working alongside project partners in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay.
The site was officially launched during a day-long workshop held in the Office of the Prosecutor for Crimes against Humanity, part of the Attorney General’s Office. The opening address was given by Argentina's Attorney General, Dr Eduardo Casal, and was followed by presentations by lawyers, academics and activists.
The new site brings together archival documents, books, articles, verdicts in criminal cases, an interactive map of victims, statistical reports and documentaries, all related to Operation Condor. It also features three specially created audio-visual productions that tell the story of Operation Condor, of the ‘Condor Trial’, that prosecuted some of the perpetrators in Argentina in 2013-16, and of the 1977 disappearance of Argentine and Uruguayan activists in Paraguay.
The website, which is currently available in Spanish and will be available in English in December, was funded by the University of Oxford’s Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Impact Acceleration Account (IAA). It was jointly created and designed with input from civil society groups Sitios de Memoria and Observatorio Luz Ibarburu in Uruguay, and Londres 38 in Chile. The site is free to access.
Dr Lessa has now won additional funding from the IAA to develop 15 new factsheets about secret detention centres linked to Operation Condor for the site, to make available a new set of 500 archival documents, and to create an interactive timeline featuring the key dates in Operation Condor and the subsequent process of justice.
The funding will also enable Dr Lessa to run two virtual workshops with journalists, academics, and teachers to enable them to work together to ensure the website and its contents meet their needs.
Dr Lessa has recently published a book about Operation Condor, The Condor Trials: Transnational Repression and Human Rights in South America, with Yale University Press.
Watch the launch events (in Spanish):
Read an article about the launch (in Spanish).