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Since the 1990s, scholars have commonly used the term lustration (lustrace) for processes of transitional justice, both in an encompassing and in a more narrow usage of the concept. According to its original meaning as “ritual cleansing or purification,” lustration can comprise all processes of transitional justice that draw a ritual boundary between a new democratic regime and a former terrorist, totalitarian, authoritarian, or other government that collaborated with occupying powers. Legal responses can range from criminal procedures to granting amnesties.

The most common meaning of lustration is a specific type of procedure within the framework of transitional justice that serves the purpose of vetting, disqualifying, and sanctioning former elites, civil servants, members of the secret police, criminal justice professionals, party members, or members of certain ...

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