Numerous historical or truth commissions have been set up in the last few decades. They have generally contributed to laying the foundations of a new coexistence in context of conflicts. In this regard the recognition of the past events is playing a crucial role, and has often opened up the path to the development of new societal relationships. This article addresses the normative bases of formally constituted historical commissions, briefly analyzing several experiences of such commissions. Finally, the article evaluates whether such a mechanism could be relevant within the normalization process of Armenian-Turkish relations, and its possible benefits for the future of the region.