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Our Directors met the Human Rights Committee
 

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​The Human Rights Committee organised on 19 July a closed meeting with the drafters of The Nijmegen Principles and Guidelines on Interim Measures for the Protection of Human Rights, including Profs Burbano Herrera and Haeck. 

We trust this important meeting will contribute to the real protection of persons in danger around the world.

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Postdoctoral Grants 
 

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Our warmest congratulations to Dr Alessandra Cuppini and Dr Gustavo Prieto for having obtained a Postdoctoral scholarship grant from the FWO. We are happy to have both of you on our Human Rights in Context team.

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Summer School  'Human Rights and Persons Deprived of Liberty'
 

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The Programme for Studies on Human Rights in Context, Human Rights Centre, Ghent University, and the Global Campus on Human Rights are pleased to invite highly motivated students and researchers to the Summer School ‘Human Rights & Persons Deprived of Liberty’.

This Summer Course will be held on the Zoom platform from Tuesday 5 to Friday 8 of July 2022.

Curated by Prof Dr Clara Burbano Herrera (Ghent University) and Prof Dr Manfred Nowak (Former UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment, Professor University of Vienna), the Summer Course aims to provide participants with suitable understanding on structural problems around prisons from the perspective of international human rights law, public health, criminal law, and practice.

Participants will have the opportunity to interact with world-leading academics from Europe, Africa and North & South America working in this field.

See you in July! 

Apply now: Summer School on line application platform

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Prof Dr Clara Burbano Herrera awarded an ERC Consolidator Grant!
 

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The Human Rights in Context team warmly congratulates our Director Prof Clara Burbano Herrera for this academic achievement. We are proud that the European Research Council (ERC) has recognised Dr Burbano Herrera’s academic work, through awarding her research and innovation funding aimed at advancing scientific knowledge.

 

With the ambitious research project IMPACTUM, Prof Burbano Herrera aims to assess from an interdisciplinary perspective the impact of urgent measures in protecting at-risk persons. Previous studies on urgent measures have focused on the procedural legal aspects. But what about the practical, financial and political constraints that hinder the implementation of urgent measures?

By studying the full context in which urgent measures are applied, the project aims to develop a 'critical normative impact framework' useful to provide a deeper theoretical analysis, as well as insight into how to formulate urgent measures to maximise their practical protective effects.

We are convinced that the project “Assessing the impact of urgent measures in protecting at-risk detainees in Latin-America” (IMPACTUM) will uncover and present new knowledge on emerging issues with urgent measures that are currently unaddressed in academia and in practice.

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Panel Discussion:

Best Practices in the Regional Protection of Human Rights   

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Join us! Panel Discussion: 'Best Practices in the Regional Protection of Human Rights'.

Moderator Prof Killander, Research Director, University of Pretoria.

Panelists: Prof Frans Viljoen, Director Human Rights Centre, University of Pretoria, Prof Yves Haeck, Director, Human Rights in Context Ghent University, Dr Nkatha Murungi, Vice-Director Human Rights Centre, University of Pretoria, Prof Clara Burbano Herrera, Director Human Rights in Context, Ghent University. 

The event will take place on Friday 8 April 2022, Pretoria, South Africa.

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International Women's Day  

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 In commemoration of International Women’s Day three blog posts have been published. Thanks to our wonderful colleagues Alejandra Vicente and Julie Bardeche from REDRESS, Valentina Montoya from the University de Los Andes, and Ineke Boerefijn from the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights for their relevant insights. Read the blog posts here

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Expert Workshop 

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Join us to our first Expert Workshop of 2022 entitled 'Captured by the Past: Monuments - Conflicts - Law'.

Over the centuries, totalitarian regimes removed monuments they did not agree with. Should democracies follow this path? 

Convenors:

Dr Alina Cherviatsova, Prof Yves Haeck, Prof Clara Burbano Herrera, and Prof Eva Brems

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Thank you! 

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As the year ends, we at Human Rights in Context would like to thank you for making 2021 an exceptional year for us. We truly  appreciate your participation in our academic events, as we strive to organize relevant and timely activities on the most pressing issues facing the world. We wish you a warm and happy holiday season. Our team looks forward to another academic year working towards a more inclusive and equitable world.

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Desmond Tutu 

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Desmond Tutu died today (26 December) aged 90. Tutu has always been an inspiration for our academic work. Our deepest condolences to his loved ones and the entire human rights network.

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Professors of the Human Rights Centre and the Rector of Ghent University play an active role at the Turkey Tribunal
 

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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 

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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

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Webinar: Memory Politics Through National Lenses

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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

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Webinar: The Situation of Human Rights Defenders in Latin-America 

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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 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

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In memory of Prof Christof Heyns

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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.

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International Conference 'Rule of Law from Below'

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Our Directors Prof Yves Haeck and Prof Clara Burbano Herrera participated in the international Conference 'Rule of Law from Below', organised by Utrecht University. The event took place on 29-30 October 2020.

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We are hiring no less than
5 researchers! 

 

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We are seeking to fill 3 full-time PhD positions and 1 Researcher (15%) as part of the large-scale research project 'IMPACTUM' Assessing the Impact of Urgent Measures in Protecting At Risk-Detainees in Latin-American led by Prof Clara Burbano Herrera. IMPACTUM is funded by the European Research Council (ERC) and hosted at Ghent University (Belgium). Apply before 5 October. If you hold a degree in law and/or criminology find more info here. If you hold a degree in political science here and here

We are also seeking to fill 1 full-time Academic Assistant in Human Rights. You will be able to assist Prof Yves Haeck and to do your PhD under his supervision. Apply until 16 August. More info here

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The Summer School
‘Human Rights & Persons Deprived of Liberty’ has ended 

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A big thank you goes out to all professors who presented thought-provoking lectures on highly topical issues concerning persons deprived of liberty. Thank you also to our participants, and our co-directors Profs Manfred Nowak & Clara Burbano-Herrera for organising this summer course. Last but not least thanks to Alessandra Cuppini and Aurélie Van Baelen for the amazing support.

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Congratulations!
 

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Yves Haeck's UGent Moot Court Team, consisting of Mariam Vandenberghe, Wout Platteau, Nel De Backer and Iris Vanheule, coached by the brilliant Hanne Ollevier, Aurélie Van Baelen and Martijn Vermeersch, for reaching the semi-finals on the Inter-American HRs Moot Court Competition, thereby also winning the Prize for the Best memorial and the Best oralists for the victims in English!

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Our students pleaded
at UNESCO in Paris 

 

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 Our students of the Ghent University pleaded before a jury of diplomats at UNESCO in Paris, in preparation for their participation in the Inter-American Human Rights Moot Court Competition. The bench, which consisted of three esteemed ad hoc-judges, challenged our students with excellent, critical questions.

Many thanks to the Permanent Delegation of Belgium to UNESCO for this unforgettable experience. A personal thanks to Belgian diplomat Andy Van Pachtenbeke and Prof Dr Yves Haeck (Director Human Rights in Context) for organising this session. Many thanks to Juan Pablo PaniegoAsoid García-Márquez and Andy Van Pachtenbeke, for agreeing to be the ad hoc judges. Thank you as well to the team's coaches Martijn VermeerschHanne Ollevier and Aurélie Van Baelen. Last but not least, thank you Dr Santiago Villalpando, for dedicating your time to introduce our students to the world of international law at UNESCO. The event took place on 11 May 2022 in Paris.

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Forthcoming book! 

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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, 2022

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New Doctoral Researcher  

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Our team welcomes new Doctoral Researcher Mayra Nunez Pastor. Her research area is transitional justice, focused on reparations on economic, social and cultural rights. Mayra will work under the supervision of Prof Burbano Herrera (UGent) and Prof Gomez Isa (Deusto University). We are happy you have joined our team!

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Workshop  ‘Russia’s War Against Ukraine and the World’

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Join us to the Workshop ‘Russia’s War Against Ukraine and the World’, which is  organised by the Programme for Studies on Human Rights in Context, the Human Rights Centre (Ghent University), and Kule Institute for Advanced Study, University of Alberta.

Date 17 March 2022, 17:00-19:00 (CET).

Registration: here (online)

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Welcome Kauan Juliano

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We are welcoming a new researcher fellow Kauan Juliano Cangussu. Kauan will work on issues related to indigenous' human rights in Brazil. We are glad to have you among us!

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In Memoriam 

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Dear Colleagues, It is with extreme sadness that we inform you that our former colleague Dr Oswaldo Ruiz-Chiriboga (°1977), professor of human rights at the Central European University (Vienna), whom we had the pleasure to supervise while doing his PhD at Ghent University, has suddenly passed away on 20 November. We extend our deepest condolences to Oswaldo Ruiz Chiriboga’s wife and family, and to the entire Central European University community.

Kind regards,

Yves Haeck and Clara Burbano Herrera

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Call for Papers

"Captured by the Past: Monuments - Conflict - Law”

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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.

Convenors

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

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International Conference  'Persons Deprived of Liberty'

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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

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Prof Dr Clara Burbano Herrera appointed Registrar of the Turkey Tribunal   

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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

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Ghent University Team participating in the 2021 Inter-American Human Rights Moot Court Competition

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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’.

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Roundtable 'Regionalisation of Children's Rights'

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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.

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Third Expert Meeting “Nijmegen Principles and Guidelines on Interim Measures for the Protection of Human Rights”

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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.

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