During the past years and following a conference co-organised by Radboud University, Ghent University and Università Napoli 2 in Nijmegen in 2015, our Directors Prof Clara Burbano Herrera and Prof Yves Haeck were part of a group of experts in drafting the “Nijmegen Principles and Guidelines on Interim Measures for the Protection of Human Rights”. We are proud to share these Principles and Guidelines with you and we hope they will contribute to the effective protection of persons currently in extreme and imminent danger around the world! You can read the Guidelines on this link
Call for Papers
"Captured by the Past: Monuments - Conflict - Law”
When the past is contested, the monuments are the first to fall. The memorial fever that started in Europe at the end of 1980s with the dismantling of communist symbols continues with the removal of monuments of historical figures tied to racial discrimination, slavery, and colonialism. Although these symbols all have different political contexts and belong to different historical epochs, the heated debates over them reflect a tectonic shift in historical narratives which released memories that were hitherto frozen. In some cases, profound disagreements about the monuments and the memorial policy behind them can cause a confrontation not only within one society but also between states (the so-called, ‘memory wars’).
The workshop ‘CAPTURED BY THE PAST: MONUMENTS. CONFLICTS. LAW’ aims to map the controversies around such monuments, as well as the memory conflicts and ‘memory wars’ of which these monuments are the symbols. Over the centuries, totalitarian regimes removed monuments they did not agree with. Should democracies then follow this path?
The organizers welcome research papers on any of the following topics:
Monuments as cultural heritage and human rights perspectives: is there a right to destroy?
Monuments as government speech: what are the limits?
Monuments and the rule of law: what are the legal standards for memory policies and public commemorative practices in a democracy?
How to Apply
Scholars are invited to submit paper proposals (500–800 words) by 25 September 2021 to Alina.Cherviatsova@UGent.be Each proposal must include a short bio (max 200 words). Successful applicants will be notified by 30 September 2021. The deadline for submitting drafts of papers (8.000-10.000 words) to be discussed during the workshop is 15 January 2022. Final papers are due 15 March 2022.
Dr Alina Cherviatsova, Senior Researcher and Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellow, Programme for Studies on Human Rights in Context, Human Rights Centre, Ghent University
Prof Dr Yves Haeck, Professor of International Human Rights Law and Director of the Programme for Studies on Human Rights in Context, Human Rights Centre, Ghent University
Prof Dr Clara Burbano-Herrera, Professor of International Human Rights Law and Director of the Programme for Studies on Human Rights in Context, Human Rights Centre, Ghent University
Prof Dr Eva Brems, Professor of Human Rights Law and Head of the Human Rights Centre, Ghent University
The workshop is organized within the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research project ‘To Destroy or to Preserve? Monuments, Law and Democracy in Europe’ (MELoDYE*) fund from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No 101032010
We are delighted to announce our forthcoming book "Human Rights Behind Bars: tracing vulnerability in prison populations from a multidisciplinary perspective", Clara Burbano Herrera and Yves Haeck (eds), Springer, 2021
Webinar: The Situation of Human Rights Defenders in Latin-America
Our Director Prof Clara Burbano Herrera together with Alicia Homs Ginel (Member of the European Parliament) participated in the event "The Situation of Human Rights Defenders in Latin-America: The Effects of the Pandemic and the EU strategy". Prof Burbano discussed the current situation of danger of human rights defenders in Latin-America, and how their their work is essential for the advancement of democracy, human rights and the rule of law. The event took place on Wednesday 30 June @ 17h. You can watch the event on this Link
In memory of Prof Christof Heyns
The members of the Programme for Studies on Human Rights in Context are deeply affected by the sudden passing of professor Christof Heyns. His work will be remembered for his many achievements in the advancement of human rights. We extend our deepest condolences to Prof Heyns’ family and the entire Pretoria human rights community.
Latin-America Ius Commune on Human Rights in CONTEXT: Meeting the Constitutional Court of Ecuador
Human Rights in Context together with the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law (Heidelberg, Germany), organised an expert meeting within the framework of our collaborative work entitled 'Dialogues ICCAL in CONTEXT'. The expert meeting with the Ecuadorian Constitutional Court aimed to grasp, directly from the judges, how the constitutional adjudication worked in a society characterised by deep-rooted social exclusion and inequality. In this regard, one of the most salient features of the Ecuadorian Constitutional jurisprudence is the proactive and creative methods - including the integration of Inter-American Human Rights standards - to keep the Executive accountable during the COVID-19 Pandemic. You can watch the event on this link.
Roundtable 'Regionalisation of Children's Rights'
Our Directors Prof Yves Haeck and Prof Clara Burbano Herrera together with Prof B. Menzur (Member UN Committee on the Rights of the Child) participated in the Roundtable 'Regionalisation of Children's Rights'. The event was organised by Prof K Hanson and Prof R. Ruggiero (University of Geneva). The event took place on 20 May 2021.
Professors of the Human Rights Centre and the Rector of Ghent University play an active role at the Turkey Tribunal
Prof Dr Yves Haeck (Rapporteur), Prof Dr Clara Burbano Herrera (Registrar), Prof Em Johan Vande Lanotte (Initiator), and Prof Dr Rik Van de Walle (Rector of Ghent University) play an active role in the Turkey Tribunal.
In recent years, human rights violations have increasingly been reported in Turkey, a Council of Europe member state, following the coup attempt. Various international human rights bodies have confirmed this, sometimes even in very sharp terms. That is why the Turkey Tribunal, a “people’s tribunal”, was created.
Victims, witnesses, and experts were heard by the Tribunal in Geneva from 20 until 24 September 2021. Following an intensive week, the Tribunal, composed of Prof Em Dr Françoise Tulkens (President), Prof Angelita Baeyens, Prof Dr Ledi Biancu, Prof Em Dr Giorgio Malinverni, Prof Dr John Pace, and Justice Prof Dr Johann Van Der Westhuizen, delivered its Opinion, establishing that Turkey has committed serious human rights violations.
While the Tribunal is not a body that issues legally binding decisions, its ruling has high moral authority. All documents, the testimonials, and the opinion of the judges have been published. In this way, the Tribunal has informed and raised awareness towards the issue among the international community.
Profs Burbano Herrera and Haeck (Human Rights Centre, Ghent University) said: “We feel honoured to have been part of this important event for the human rights community, and for having helped to bring a kind of justice to the victims and their families (…). We would also like to express our gratitude to everyone who has contributed to the Turkey Tribunal for their commitment and hard work”.
More on the Turkey Tribunal: https://turkeytribunal.com
On the photo the Judges and Registrars of The historical Turkey Tribunal, including Prof Dr Clara Burbano Herrera. The Tribunal was created in 2020 to investigate the increasing number of allegations of human rights abuses committed by the Turkish government in recent years. Video
Webinar: Memory Politics Through National Lenses
Team member Dr. Alina Cherviatsova, Marie Sklodowska-Curie, project: “To Destroy or To Preserve: Monuments, Law and Democracy in Europe”, participated in the webinar ‘Memory Politics Through National Lenses’ which explores how the 20th century’s past is (re)interpreted by different countries. The event took place on 22 October. More info here and here
International Conference 'Persons Deprived of Liberty'
Human Rights in Context together with the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, and the Peruvian Constitutional Court organised the international conference 'Persons Deprived of Liberty'. On this ocassion, 'Dialogues ICCAL in CONTEXT' met judges of the Constitutional Tribunal of Peru and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and had a discussion regarding problems and challenges in prisons from the perspective of international human rights standards in the Americas and Europe. The event took place on Monday 21 June 2021. You can watch the event on this link
Prof Dr Clara Burbano Herrera appointed Registrar of the Turkey Tribunal
We are glad to communicate that Prof Dr Clara Burbano Herrera has been appointed Registrar of the Turkey Tribunal. The Turkey Tribunal was created in 2020 to investigate the increasing number of allegations of human rights abuses committed by the Turkish government in recent years. Video
Ghent University Team participating in the 2021 Inter-American Human Rights Moot Court Competition
A Ghent University team composed of Delphine Camerier, Thibaut Lesseliers (oralists), Sharon Braekman, Sofie De Mulder and Sehrish Raja, under the supervision of Prof Yves Haeck and coaches Hanne Ollevier, Aurélie Van Baelen and Martijn Vermeersch, and following a master class of Prof Clara Burbano Herrera, is participating for the tenth year in the prestigious Inter-American Human Rights Moot Court Competition against teams representing universities worldwide. This year, the Competition, which due to the current circumstances is taking place virtually, addresses the highly topical issue of ‘Human Rights and States of Emergency: Unexpected Crisis and New Challenges’.
Third Expert Meeting “Nijmegen Principles and Guidelines on Interim Measures for the Protection of Human Rights”
During the past years our Directors Prof Clara Burbano Herrera and Prof Yves Haeck are part of a group of experts in drafting the “Nijmegen Principles and Guidelines on Interim Measures for the Protection of Human Rights”. The third Expert Meeting, 'Urgent Measures' Principles and Guidelines' had the participation of Prof C. Burbano-Herrera, Human Rights in Context; Prof Y. Haeck, Human Rights in Context; Prof C. Flinterman, Maastricht University, former member UN Human Rights Committee (HRCtee) and Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW); Ms B. Griffey, Amnesty International; Prof J. Harrington, University of Alberta; Prof P. Leach, Middlesex University, European Human Rights Advocacy Centre (EHRAC); Dr R. Möhrlein, University of Amsterdam; Ms R. Pillay, International Commission of Jurists; and Prof E. Rieter, Radboud University Nijmegen. The event took place on 26 May 2021.