Current News and Announcements
The volume draws on legal scholars, political scientists, anthropologists and political philosophers grappling with the weight of the memory of historical injustices arising from conflicts in Europe, the Middle East and Australasia. It examines the role of human rights as legal doctrine, rhetoric and policy as developed by states, international organizations, regional groups and non-governmental bodies. The authors question whether faith in human rights is justified as balm to heal past injustice or whether such faith nourishes both victimhood and self-justification.
These issues are explored through three discrete sections: moments of memory and injustice, addressing injustice; and questions of faith. In each of these sections, authors address the manner in which memory of past conflicts and injustice haunt our contemporary understanding of human rights. The volume questions whether the expectation that human rights law can deal with past injustice has undermined the development of an emancipatory politics of human rights for our current world.
Details about the second edition of the textbook can be found on the Routledge website. The third edition will be released in late 2017/early 2018.
UEL students have delivered their first peer-to-peer workshops on hate speech and hate crime, designed and developed by themselves, to an impressive group of young leaders at NewVic sixth form college. This first session focused on definitions, how to recognise hate speech and hate crime and how to distinguish it from bullying. Next week, there will be more guidance on how to intervene in a safe way when faced with a hate incident, including reporting options. Participants will also get practical support from our students and community organisers Citizens UK on how to take forward their own ideas for a campaign or project using what they've learned. The workshops are part of the Step Up to Hate project funded by UEL’s London Scholars programme.
On Wednesday 26th April 2017 Professor Michael Ignatieff, President and Rector of Central European University, Budapest, delivered a lecture titled 'The Refugee as the Invasive Other'.
The video is available to watch here.
Walls, razor wire and fences are going up all over Europe - and North America too - as democracies face the challenge of mass migration. How do we reconcile refugees' rights of asylum with sovereign rights of border control and citizens' rights to security?
The language of rights is now on a collision course with the language of democracy and sovereignty. What role can the language of the gift play in sustaining political support for prudent migration policies?
Sylvie Namwase, a research student at the CHRC recently co-edited the volume Protecting the human rights of sexual minorities in contemporary Africa. It is published by Pretoria University Law Press and is available for free download here.
Following the events of September 11, a new legal order is emerging in which the 'terrorist threat' has been used as justification to marginalise human rights. This collection of themed essays offers an emphatic defence to the threats confronting our human rights culture. In analysing the role of the United Nations, the conduct of the Afghan war, domestic anti-terrorist legislation and the new debate about Islamic law, Law after Ground Zero demonstrates the future challenges that law will face within our global society. It also offers accounts of how events have impacted on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, Iraq and Afghanistan itself, as well as debates about international law, human rights and women's rights. This unique work will interest those studying or researching in the areas of international law, human rights and humanitarian law, international relations, politics, critical legal studies, Islamic law, culture and socio-legal studies.
February 8, 2017
Time: 13:00 – 14:00 hours
US1.01, University Square Stratford, UEL
As post-truths, alternative facts and the rise of ‘sameness’ certainties populate the contemporary, raw racism and other hate-acts bid for the new norm. Consider this: an Indian cashier is asked if he will go home to India on the morning after the Brexit vote and, in turn, is defended by his ‘English’ co-worker. A Portuguese health worker is told off for her accent and is defended by someone who looks like her but with the ‘right’ voice.
This seminar considers that in everyday settings alongside and in contestation of violence, are many voices that form small and not so small acts of shared understandings, kindness and care as part of being human and through cosmopolitan notions of stranger-welcome.
The seminar explores these spaces as indicative of many reflexive individuals who bring their thinking and action to bear on issues of difficulties, as interventionist in the age of the ‘140-letter character’ sound-bites and other public ‘performances’.
Narmala draws on long-term research in different countries, ongoing research in London, work in human rights and lived experiences to explore these issues through the role of reflexivity. She will discuss her work on self-reflexive individuals in cities and villages, and her current work on ‘experiences in and out of the ordinary’ in London, to develop this talk and to consider how it provides for civic engagement and intervention. She is developing non-textual formats on reflexive selves - research participants and others are also being invited to nominate contributions to this work.
Thinking anthropologically considers that in privileging the voices and views of others, we inhabit and share worlds in ways that can challenge/ offer positive change to contemporary problems of difference and similarities. In teaching and learning anthropology, we draw in and out the potentiality and the existing knowledge of acting reflexively as openings beyond bounded and absolute positions.
In Dialogue with anthropologists’ series Organised by the Anthropology and Contemporary Worlds Research Group, UEL
itself' published in The Conversation click here.
Professor Sriram has published a new book with Oxford University Press and Hurst on Transitional Justice in the Middle East and North Africa. This edited volume includes leading scholars of the region and of human rights and transitional justice in the first book-length treatment of transitional justice processes in the wake of the “Arab Spring”. Details can be found here. A working group summary report produced by the Center for International and Regional Studies, Georgetown University, Qatar, on the multi-disciplinary research initiative that led to this publication is available here.
3-year PhD studentship at UEL Centre on Human Rights in Conflict
The University of East London, Centre on Human Rights in Conflict, is pleased to announce a 3-year PhD studentship. A successful candidate will be supervised by a team led by Professor Chandra Lekha Sriram, and become a member of the Centre on Human Rights in Conflict (CHRC: www.uel.ac.uk/chrc).
Each studentship is for a period of three years, subject to satisfactory progress with a maintenance allowance of £16,510 for the 2017-18 academic year, plus a training bursary of £2,000. The stipend is tax-free.
Chandra Sriram and Sally Holt have been awarded a research grant by the Folke Bernadotte Academy, the Swedish Government’s agency for peace, security and development. The grant is to conduct research in Colombia on efforts at accountability and peace, focusing on rule of law, gender, and land rights. The two-year project will begin in January 2017 and develop academic findings and policy suggestions.
Professor Chandra Lekha Sriram is part of a successful bid to the Global Challenges Research Fund. The project, led by Dr. Kirsten Ainley at LSE, includes Chandra as a co-Investigator in a “Strategic network on justice, conflict and development”. The project will hold strategic meetings with experts and stakeholders in Colombia, Sri Lanka, and Uganda, as well as a meeting in Lebanon for Syrian experts and stakeholders. These will form the foundation for a continuing network as well as future research activities.
CHRC's Sally Holt is assisting the Europe Foundation in Georgia to mainstream minority concerns into their program development, design and monitoring. As part of this consultancy, she will also deliver training for Foundation staff on international standards and mechanisms for the protection of minority rights, as well as advocacy strategies to enhance minority participation and integration.
On 4 November 2016, CHRC Director, Professor Chandra Lekha Sriram, gave an invited Lecture at the International Nuremberg Principles Academy. This lecture, as part of the 70th anniversary conference commemorating the Nuremberg Trials, took place in the historic Courtroom 600, where the original trials took place. Professor Sriram spoke about the relationship between domestic accountability, peace, and democratisation and the effects of international trials. Further details can be found here.
A short version of Professor Sriram’s talk will be published by the Academy and available on the Centre’s website shortly.
On 18 October 2016 the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence, Pablo de Greiff, delivered a public lecture on 'Guarantees of Non-recurrence: the Future of Dealing with the Past' as part of a series of events celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Centre on Human Rights in Conflict. Click here to watch a video of the lecture.
Maja’s article ‘Is there a right time for gender just peace? Feminist anti-war organising revisited’ has been published in a special issue of the journal Gender and Education Volume 28:3: If not now, when? Feminism in contemporary activist, social and educational contexts. You can download the article here: http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/6nVNADmDdyKSs6viBQZ3/full
On 25 April, Professor Chandra Lekha Sriram acted as a discussant for a seminar on accountability and justice in postconflict Sri Lanka at the University of London, SOAS: https://www.soas.ac.uk/human-rights-law/events/25apr2016-new-government-persistent-challenges--human-rights-accountability-and-justice-in-sri-lanka.html
The CHRC's Catherine Hobby will be speaking at the Institute of Employment Rights 1-day London conference on 'Human Rights vs. Bill of Rights: What's in it for workers?' on Wednesday 27 April 2016. For more about the IER see: http://www.ier.org.uk/
A similar event will take place in Liverpool on 19 May: http://www.ier.org.uk/node/2944
John Strawson was interviewed by Premier Christian Radio on the Commons motion on Daesh and Genocide which is being debated today, 20 April 2016. An interview with Fiona Bruce the MP proposing the motion is also available here:http://www.premierchristianradio.com/News/UK/MPs-to-vote-if-IS-killing-of-Christians-is-genocide
John will be giving a commencement lecture, on 25 November, and all are welcome. Details are available on the Events page, under 'Fall/Spring Seminars'.
More pictures of the trainings and information about the Youthopia Project which is delivered through the Famagusta Youth Center (MAGEM) in northern Cyprus in cooperation with partners in the south, Youth Power, can be found on facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/youthopiacy
The case concerns the Kaliña and Lokono indigenous peoples of Suriname and their land rights. This case arises from petitioners’ claims that the indigenous property rights of the Lower Marowijne Peoples are neither recognised nor respected in the laws of Suriname. Petitioners claim that the State’s laws, in violation of the American Convention on Human Rights, vest ownership of all untitled lands and natural resources in the State, fail to provide adequate remedies for protection of indigenous property rights, and do not recognize the juridical personality of the Lower Marowijne Peoples for the purpose of holding land titles or seeking protection for their communal rights.
Dr. Gilbert was invited to provide an expert opinion to the Court.
See order of the President of the Court available at:
Dr. Gilbert provided a statement regarding the interaction between protected areas and human rights law of indigenous peoples, and on the balancing of property rights between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples. He answered questions from the representatives of the victims and the government, before providing more details answers to the judges.
The hearing is available to be watched online at:
(Dr. Gilbert presentation starts at 2 hours within the video)
Professor Chandra Lekha Sriram, Co-Director of the Centre on Human Rights in Conflict was a guest on the BBC World News on 10 December 2014, discussing the release of the report of the Brazilian truth commission in the context of truth commissions globally. The interview is available here.
The Centre on Human Rights in Conflict is pleased to announce the publication of the research report Local voices in internationalised justice: The experience of civil parties at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia by Research Fellow Johanna Herman.
The experience of civil parties participating in Case 002 at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) provides important insights into victim participation in a mass atrocity trial. Understanding the expectations of civil parties and evaluating their experience so far will help us to improve victim support at future cases at the ECCC and other internationalised courts.
The report presents the findings from interviews with civil parties at the beginning of Case 002/01 and identifies key themes, lessons learned and areas for future research. This project was funded by the Nuffield Foundation and led by Johanna Herman.
The Centre for Human Rights in Conflict will be running a workshop on ‘Land Grabbing, Land Rights and Human Rights” on 6th June 2014. The workshop, which is funded by a grant from the Modern Law Review will address the controversial issue of ‘land grabbing’ which refers to a sharp acceleration in acquisition of lands globally by foreign investors in developing countries seeking to produce crops for export. This often results in forced displacement and loss of livelihoods for the local populations. Focusing on the links between human rights and land rights in theory and practice, the workshop will offer a unique opportunity to gather the thoughts and perspectives of key international scholars and practitioners whose work on issues related to land rights is rarely congregated.
The seminar is organised by Jeremie Gilbert. Details are available on the Events page, under 'Workshops'.
- examines the tensions and complementarities between protection of human rights and resolution of conflict, including the competing political demands and the challenges posed by internal armed conflict;
- analyses the different obligations and legal regimes applicable to state and non-state actors, including non-state armed groups, corporations and private military and security companies;
- explores the scope and effects of human rights violations in contemporary armed conflicts, such as those in Sierra Leone, Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the former Yugoslavia, and implications for the "Arab Spring";
- assesses the legal and institutional accountability mechanisms developed in the wake of armed conflict to punish violations of human rights law, and international humanitarian law such as the ad hoc tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, and the International Criminal Court;
- discusses continuing and emergent global trends and challenges in the fields of human rights and conflict analysis.
This volume will be essential reading for students of war and conflict studies, human rights, and international humanitarian law, and highly recommended for students of conflict resolution, peacebuilding, international security and international relations, generally. To order with a 20% discount, please use the code from this flyer.