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Enforced disappearance is one of the most serious human rights violations. It constitutes an autonomous offence and a crime under international law on account of its multiple and continuing character. It is not a phenomenon of the past, nor is it geographically limited to Latin America: such scourge is widespread today and on the increase in other continents. For more than twenty-five years, relatives of disappeared people worldwide have insisted on the pressing need for an international legally binding instrument against enforced disappearances. 2006 is the year of the adoption of the International Convention on the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances, which represents the result of several legislative and jurisprudential developments that are duly analyzed in this book. The Convention has been opened for signature in February 2007.