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This paper takes a comparative approach to assess some of the major strengths and weaknesses associated with TRCs. By drawing on the wealth of knowledge available through case studies of transitional societies, obstacles and opportunities for TRCs are identified. The influence of international organisations such as the UN is also be taken into account. These elements are used to draw up a framework of generic issues associated with TRCs that, when applied with cultural and historic sensitivity, helps to explain the 9 varying degrees of welcome and success that this mechanism of transitional justice has been met with.