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September 30, 2016

Alumni Perspective: “The Significance of the al-Mahdi Case and the War Crime of Destruction of Cultural Heritage”

Posted by Cara Solomon

Great work here by Danae Paterson, JD ’16, who co-authored this piece on a historic prosecution that goes right to the heart of cultural identity. The International Criminal Court has since sentenced Ahmad al-Faqi al-Mahdi, a member of a jihadist group, to nine years in prison for his role in demolishing historic Muslim shrines in Timbuktu, Mali.

The piece, which Danae co-authored with Dr. Paul Williams, co-founder of the Public International Law & Policy Group, was originally published on The Huffington Post under the headline: “Tear it all down: The significance of the al-Mahdi case and the war crime of destruction of cultural heritage.” Danae is currently working as a Law Fellow with Public International Law & Policy Group’s Syria negotiations team.

 

“The best way to tear someone down is to tear down their culture, tear down everything that is important to them” – Witness MLI-OTP-P-0431 for the Prosecution,Prosecutor v. Ahmad al-Faqi al-Mahdi



In 2012, at least ten revered religious monuments were destroyed in Timbuktu, Mali. The violation of these sacrosanct markers of culture and collective identity by al-Qaeda-backed extremists, dealt a painful and shocking injury to Mali’s Muslim community. For nearly everyone in the community, these UNESCO-designated mausoleums physically embodied Timbuktu’s historic identity as a prominent center of Islamic learning in the 15th and 16th centuries.

Continue Reading…

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September 28, 2016

Tomorrow, Sept. 29: “Eyeing the World,” a book talk by HRP founder Henry Steiner


henrybookSeptember 29, 2016

“Eyeing the World”

A book talk and discussion with Henry J. Steiner, Founder, Human Rights Program
Jeremiah Smith, Jr. Professor of Law, Emeritus

12:00 – 1:00 p.m.

Milstein East A

Harvard Law School

 

The Harvard Law School Library staff invite you to attend a talk and discussion about a recently published photography book,  “Eyeing the World,” by Henry J. Steiner, Jeremiah Smith, Jr. Professor of Law, Emeritus, and founder of the Human Rights Program at Harvard Law School. The book talk and discussion will include commentary by Duncan Kennedy, Carter Professor of General Jurisprudence, Emeritus, Harvard Law School.

Copies of “Eyeing the World” will be available for sale and Professor Steiner will be available for signing books at the end of his talk.

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September 23, 2016

Clinical Hospitality Coordinator Heather Williams Celebrated with Dean’s Award for Excellence

Posted by Cara Solomon

For years, Heather Williams has given her warmth and understanding and knowledge of the law school to anyone who walks through the doors of 6 Everett Street, looking for help. Her smile alone is enough to put anyone at ease. So it was nothing short of a thrill to see her celebrated yesterday, along with 10 other staff, with the Dean’s Award for Excellence.

Our colleague Heather Williams, Clinical Hospitality Coordinator, one of 11 recipients of the Dean’s Award for Excellence.

Here’s what Dean Minow had to say about Heather, whose official title is Clinical Hospitality Coordinator for the Office of Clinical and Pro Bono Programs:

“Heather is the Clinical Hospitality Coordinator for Clinical and Pro Bono Programs, which is to say she is the face to the entire community. She serves the world in our justice vision at Harvard Law School. Heather is deeply committed. She has continually demonstrated her dedication to the work of the various sclinics and the student practice organizations. She is the window to Harvard Law School. She is the face of Harvard Law School. She is the voice of Harvard Law School. The people who are in serious need, the Clinical community, and the Law School are better every day because of what she does.

Heather greets clients when they come for appointments. She makes sure they get to the right place at the right time. In each and every situation, she will do whatever it takes to make sure that the clients’ needs and expectations are met, and at the same time, alleviating the needs of those who seek guidance. Continue Reading…

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September 20, 2016

The Clinic Welcomes New Advocacy Fellows

Posted by Cara Solomon

Now that we’re in the rhythm of the semester, it’s time to introduce some new faces in the International Human Rights Clinic. We’re thrilled to welcome five new clinical advocacy fellows, all accomplished lawyers with different expertise and experiences. They’re leading clinical projects this semester on a range of new topics, from human rights protection in investment treaties to armed conflict and the environment.

The Clinic's new advocacy fellows, from top right: Rebecca Agule, Yee Htun, Fola Adeleke, Juan Pablo Calderon-Meza, and Salma Waheedi.

The Clinic’s new advocacy fellows, from top left: Rebecca Agule, Yee Htun, Fola Adeleke, Juan Pablo Calderon-Meza, and Salma Waheedi.

In alphabetical order, here they are:

Fola Adeleke is a South African-trained lawyer who specializes in international economic law and human rights, corporate transparency, open government and accountability within the extractives industry. This semester, his projects focus on human rights protection in investment treaties and reconfiguring the licensing process of mining to include more consultation with communities.

Rebecca Agule, an alumna of the Clinic, is an American lawyer who specializes in the impact of conflict and violence upon individuals, communities, and the environment. This semester, her project focuses on armed conflict and the environment, with a focus on victim assistance.

Juan Pablo Calderón-Meza, a former Visiting Fellow with the Human Rights Program, is a Colombian attorney whose practice specializes in international law and human rights advocacy and litigation. This semester, his project focuses on accountability for corporations and executives that facilitated human rights abuses and atrocity crimes.

Yee Htun is the Director of  the Myanmar Program for Justice Trust, a legal non-profit that partners with lawyers and activists to strengthen communities fighting for justice and human rights. Born in Myanmar and trained as a lawyer in Canada, Yee specializes in gender justice and working on behalf of refugee and migrant communities. This semester, her project focuses on women advocates in Myanmar.

Salma Waheedi is an attorney who specializes in international human rights law, Islamic law, gender justice, family law, comparative constitutional law, and refugee and asylum law. Born in Bahrain and trained as a lawyer in the U.S., Salma currently holds a joint appointment with Harvard Law School’s Islamic Legal Studies Program, where she focuses on family relations in Islamic jurisprudence. This semester, her project focuses on gender justice under Islam.

We’re so pleased to have the fellows as part of our community this semester. Please swing by at some point to introduce yourself and say hello.

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September 14, 2016

Tomorrow, Sept. 15: “U.S. Law and Policy on Transitional Justice”


zachary-kaufman-1-1September 15, 2016

“U.S. Law and Policy on Transitional Justice”

A book talk by Zachary D. Kaufman

12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
WCC 3016
Harvard Law School


Please join us for a discussion with Zachary D. Kaufman about his new book, United States Law and Policy on Transitional Justice: Principles, Politics, and Pragmatics (Oxford University Press, 2016), which explores the U.S. government’s support for, or opposition to, certain transitional justice institutions. Dr. Kaufman, a senior fellow at the Kennedy School, presents an overview of possible responses to atrocities (such as war crimes tribunals), then evaluates why and how the U.S. has pursued particular transitional justice options since World War II.

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