January 14, 2020
Cabrera Silva spent Summer 2019 at Colectivo Emancipaciones, in Morelia, Michoacán, México
Summer fellowships for human rights internships are a central part of the Harvard Law School human rights experience. During the summer of 2019, HRP funded five HLS students to intern abroad at nongovernmental organizations for up to eight weeks. At the conclusion of their internships, students returned to HRP with a deeper appreciation for the type of work required of human rights practitioners. Over the course of the next month while our summer fellowship application is open, we’ll be excerpting portions from their fellowship reports to provide a glimpse into the kinds of experiences open to human rights students at Harvard Law.
As an SJD candidate studying grassroots mobilizing in human rights, Angel Gabriel Cabrera Silva wanted to immerse himself in a social justice organization working in partnership with indigenous communities. He joined Colectivo Emancipaciones, an NGO that advocates on behalf of indigenous rights. In order to express its democratic goals, the Colectivo organizes itself into non-hierarchical “commissions.” Angel joined the “Litigation Commission” and the “Community Council’s Commission.” In the former, Cabrera Silva worked on strategic litigation on behalf of indigenous communities. In the latter, he worked with communities on socio-political organizing.
He described his work as follows:
“Currently, the Colectivo Emancipaciones is working alongside Community Councils of the towns of Pichátaro, San Felipe de los Herreros, Arantepacua, and Santa Fe de la Laguna to intervene in a legislative process that intends to regulate their budgetary autonomy. The axis of this strategy is to preemptively organize the social and political aspects of a process for free, prior, and informed consultation that will be reclaimed after (and if) this bill is discussed by Congress. As such, my task was to attend meetings with the various Councils, brief them about the legal elements of the strategy, listen to their opinions, and collaboratively think about how to articulate the organizational aspects (like when and how would it be easier to organize a politically efficient process of free, prior, and informed consent).”
Cabrera Silva plans to return to some of the communities that Colectivo partnered with later in his SJD to do fieldwork. Over the summer, he was particularly impressed with the community commitment of the NGO. He explained that working at Colectivo Emancipaciones provided “a clear example of how the outcomes of human rights work change when advocates have direct political commitments to specific social movements (rather than abstract normative commitments or indirect commitments with donors).”
At Colectivo, he said, “the role of lawyers was never to upkeep any norm or to advise the communities about the proper legal avenue to get a favorable decision. Instead, the lawyers were constantly reviewing the political and social usefulness of any legal action. The constant contact with community councils meant that the Colectivo was always in touch with what material solutions were needed, and their work revolved around that aspect. In fact, the very structure of the Colectivo (organized in a Commission) seems to have been learned from the way the Community Councils organize themselves.”
Angel further elaborated on how the funding structure of the NGO provided a positive influence on its culture, saying: “The fellowship also gave me a lot of insights into how NGOs are sometimes influenced by external sources of funding. The Colectivo Emancipaciones has an internal policy of not accepting any money that might condition their work. In this sense, they have almost no external donors. They mostly fund themselves through their own professional independent practice. They have also established collaborative academic research projects as a means to embolden their alliance with the communities. This mode of practice has an important influence on the power dynamics between the Colectivo, communities, and the individual members of the Colectivo, which are much more horizontal and open for reflection.”
Overall, the internship gave Cabrera Silva the opportunity to re-examine what skills are important in human rights work. “Normally, I would think that having expertise in the latest development of international standards and knowing all the international procedures was one of the most important advantages of a human rights lawyer. However, I realize how little this technical knowledge might matter in contrast to developing the skills that relate to political strategizing, community organizing, and even inter-personal support.”
Interested in learning more about HRP Summer Fellowships? Schedule an advising appointment with Anna Crowe, Assistant Director of the International Human Rights Clinic, and apply to join our 2020 cohort today! Please note that you do not need to have a confirmed placement organization before you apply for the 2020 HRP summer fellowship pool. Applications are due February 1, 2020!
January 7, 2020
As we advertise our 2020-2021 Visiting Fellowship (VF) application, we are looking back and celebrating alums of the program. Jimena Reyes, Americas Director at the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), joined HRP during the Spring 2018 semester as the Eleanor Roosevelt Fellow. The profile below ran in our 2017-2018 Annual Report.
Through its Visiting Fellows Program, the Human Rights Program (HRP) has sought to give individuals with a demonstrated commitment to human rights an opportunity to engage with the human rights community at Harvard Law School (HLS).
Scholars and practitioners interested in applying should submit their materials by January 31, 2020. For the upcoming cycle, HRP will be considering applications for resident Visiting Fellows on semester-long or academic-year-long stays, as well as applications for short visits of several days or more.
Find out more about how Jimena spent her semester at HRP below, and learn about this year’s cohort and past Visiting Fellows to explore the range of research VFs have engaged on while in residence at HLS.
December 6, 2019
Through its Visiting Fellows Program, the Human Rights Program (HRP) has sought to give individuals with a demonstrated commitment to human rights an opportunity to engage with the human rights community at Harvard Law School (HLS). Each year, the Visiting Fellows Program forms a critical part of creating a human rights community at HLS. For the 2020-2021 academic year, HRP invites scholars and practitioners with substantial experience in human rights to apply to the Visiting Fellows Program.
Applicants may come from a range of backgrounds and with varying academic and professional experiences in the field of human rights. Visiting Fellows commonly come from academic institutions, but a number of fellows have also come from the judiciary and other branches of government. Typically, fellows have come from outside the United States and are individuals with extensive experience. Mid-career applicants are also common, and on occasion, fellows have included more junior individuals in the field with the capacity and interest to develop as teachers or advocates.
For 2020-2021, HRP will be considering both applications for resident Visiting Fellows on semester-long or academic-year-long stays, and applications for short visits of several days or more. Longer times in residence offer an opportunity to step back and conduct a serious inquiry in the human rights field, pursuing academic research and writing at HRP. Shorter engagements provide a chance for more focused interactions with the HLS community, including advising on academic publications and careers as well as training on particular human rights skills and careers in the field.Continue Reading…
December 3, 2019
Summer fellowships for human rights internships are a central part of the Harvard Law School (HLS) human rights experience and provide rich professional, personal, and intellectual opportunities. Many students and alumni/ae who are committed to human rights were introduced to the field through an internship. Interns work for at least eight weeks with nongovernmental or intergovernmental organizations concerned with human rights, exclusively outside the United States.
Last summer, students had a range of experiences across the globe, from studying human rights-based climate change litigation at Amnesty International in London to working with community lawyers on indigenous rights for the NGO Colectivo Emancipaciones in México. Over the next couple months, HRP will be showcasing 2019 summer fellows with excerpts from their final reports. Follow along at our blog and email [email protected] with any questions.
September 19, 2019
By Elaine McArdle
As a young person in Sierra Leone in the 1990s, Alpha Sesay knew little but war. He lost close family to the conflict, witnessed atrocities, and was internally displaced before obtaining refugee status in Guinea. As a university student in Sierra Leone, he was arrested and beaten in prison after challenging a police practice as not grounded in law.
“Those experiences really influenced me a great deal in terms of what I wanted to do with my life,” said Sesay, who as a human rights lawyer has held various positions in the human rights and international justice sectors. He is currently an Advocacy Officer for the Open Society Justice Initiative (OSJI) in Washington, D.C. Sesay has dedicated his career to human rights, moved to make sure that his experiences of war are not replicated elsewhere. “What shall I do as an individual so that this doesn’t happen again and that others don’t experience what we did as a country?” he said.
As a law student, Sesay mobilized friends to launch the first student human rights group in Sierra Leone—and the first human rights clinic in Western Africa—which led to the creation of a human rights module at the University of Sierra Leone. After getting his law degree in Sierra Leone and an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the University of Notre Dame Law School, he returned to his home country to establish and teach international human rights at the university.
When the trial of former Liberian President Charles Taylor before the Special Court for Sierra Leone was moved to The Hague, Sesay created and managed a trial-monitoring project for OSJI that provided daily information to Sierra Leonean and Liberian audiences. A few years earlier, he had created a similar trial-monitoring and accountability program for proceedings before the Special Court for Sierra Leone and criminal cases within Sierra Leone’s domestic justice system. In that program, he focused on promoting judicial accountability and providing information to and soliciting feedback from the public, especially victims in Sierra Leone. Today, it has become one of the country’s leading NGOs, he said.
Sesay took a sabbatical from OSJI in 2018-2019, joining HRP as a Visiting Fellow. At HLS, he researched how the state fails to comply with decisions of human rights bodies. His aim was to devise recommendations for how to better ensure state compliance with human rights standards. As a fellow, Sesay also mentored HLS students interested in human rights work and offered his expertise to Harvard faculty working on various human rights issues.
He described interacting with students and sharing his knowledge of the African human rights system as one of the highlights of his time at the Law School. “To find myself at Harvard doing research and contributing to the university’s academic life was immensely fulfilling,” and the human rights community “is a really welcoming academic environment.”
“Having been an intimate witness to human rights violations myself, I strive to give those a platform who would not otherwise have a voice,” he said. “A lot of people, many of them victims [of human rights violations] themselves, work every day to make life better for vulnerable communities. Those people inspire me every day in the work we do.”
This profile is an excerpt from the 2018-2019 Human Rights Program Annual Report. You can access the full report here.
August 23, 2019
Posted by Elaine McArdle
Between 2010 and 2014 in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), rebels from the Nduma Defence of Congo (NDC) militia murdered, raped, and looted hundreds of civilians and forced children to become soldiers. In November 2018, the trial for war crimes and crimes against humanity against NDC’s militia leader Ntabo Ntaberi, who goes by the war name “Sheka,” commenced before the Operational Military Court of North Kivu.
As a 2018-2019 Satter Fellow in Human Rights, Anna Khalfaoui LL.M. ’17 spent the year in the DRC working with the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) to assist survivors and their lawyers through the trial, acting as a liaison in support of the justice system.
“After nine years, to finally have a trial that looks at these incidents is so important,” said Khalfaoui, a British-trained French attorney who chose Harvard Law School for its human rights training. “Being part of the team supporting survivors who’ve waited so long to tell their stories is an incredible learning opportunity.”
Khalfaoui also assisted survivors and their lawyers in the historic trial of militia leader Marcel Habarugira Rangira. With the support of a coalition of local and international actors, including ABA ROLI, Habarugira was convicted in February 2019 of the war crimes of rape and of conscription, enlistment and use of children as soldiers. The conviction for conscripting and using child soldiers was notably the first such conviction in the DRC.
These cases are very challenging, Khalfaoui noted, explaining that there is tremendous pressure on survivors to recant their stories. Diverse actors, from the military justice and local organizations, to NGOs like ABA ROLI and the UN peacekeeping forces in the DRC have worked together to make these trials possible. They are nevertheless expensive, often lengthy, and incredibly complex. Given the instability and insecurity in Eastern DRC, these trials face critical challenges from the lack of an effective investigative and prosecutorial strategy to difficulties providing protection for the survivors and witnesses.
Still, Khalfaoui is determined to continue working on these important issues. “I think it’s become clearer as I work on this trial that I’m more and more interested in doing direct legal work with people who are affected by human rights violations,” she said. During her fellowship, Khalfaoui is also supporting ABA ROLI’s early warning system for preventing atrocities, which allows people to alert security forces when there are signs of impending violence against civilian populations. The system, which is also being used in response to an Ebola breakout, is being expanded to new zones in Eastern DRC and to include conflict prevention activities to reduce community conflict.
After the fellowship, Khalfaoui plans to continue working on international human rights and international humanitarian law litigation.
The Satter Human Rights Fellowship is designed to support and promote human rights defense in response to mass atrocities. The fellowship is made possible by a generous gift from Muneer A. Satter J.D./M.B.A.’87. This profile is a preview of the 2018-2019 Human Rights Program Annual Report, which will be available soon on the HRP blog. You can also read this post on the HLS Today website.
August 22, 2019
As a Satter Fellow, Jenny Domino LL.M. ’18 focused on how social media policy limits one’s right to speak in the midst of democratic transition
By Elaine McArdle
After graduating from Harvard Law School, Jenny Domino LL.M. ’18 was awarded a Satter Human Rights Fellowship from the Human Rights Program for the 2018-2019 year. A lawyer from the Philippines, Domino spent her fellowship year with ARTICLE 19, a human rights organization focused on the defense and promotion of freedom of expression and information. Over the last year, she has worked to strengthen ARTICLE 19’s response to hate speech in Myanmar, specifically as it incites and provokes violence against the Rohingya community.
Among other things, Domino wrote a human rights-based report analyzing the sufficiency of Facebook’s responses to criticism that it had failed to moderate hate speech in a timely manner in Myanmar. Her report has significantly informed ARTICLE 19 Asia’s engagement with Facebook regarding its content moderation policies. She also organized a regional workshop in spring 2019 on hate speech on social media, bringing together human rights defenders from the ASEAN region to discuss common themes of disinformation, attacks on the press, and weak social media policy.
Facebook’s community standards are the same throughout the world, but a problem occurs when rules are enforced without sufficiently taking into account the geopolitical contexts in which such content is shared, said Domino. Throughout her career, Domino has dedicated herself to deepening the commitment to international human rights law in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region. In her home country of the Philippines, she led the Commission on Human Rights’ accountability project on the persons most responsible for the extrajudicial killings arising from President Rodrigo Duterte’s drug war. Her work proved useful in light of the International Criminal Court’s preliminary examination into whether these killings constitute crimes against humanity.
“When you enter a market and you don’t understand the political context of where you’re operating, that can be a problem,” she said. “The way certain speech is received or acted upon in one context—let’s say, the U.S. or the Netherlands—is different in a place like Myanmar or the Philippines. This distinction is more pronounced when the political context of a specific country involves atrocity crimes or systematic violence against civilians.”
The year has been “very meaningful for me,” said Domino, who will continue to specialize at the intersection of freedom of expression, corporate responsibility, and international human rights law, at the International Commission of Jurists, following her fellowship.
“I’ve learned a lot, not just in terms of substantive knowledge but the practical—and sometimes grim—aspects of working in the NGO scene. I am still trying to figure out through which capacity I can serve best, one where I can make the most impact as a lawyer. For now, I am content to have discovered a cause I deeply care about.”
The Satter Human Rights Fellowship is designed to support and promote human rights defense in response to mass atrocities. The fellowship is made possible by a generous gift from Muneer A. Satter J.D./M.B.A.’87. This profile is a preview of the 2018-2019 Human Rights Program Annual Report. This article was cross-posted to HLS Today’s website.
August 14, 2019
The Human Rights Program is pleased to welcome five exemplary human rights practitioners and scholars to Harvard Law School as 2019-2020 Visiting Fellows. Through its Visiting Fellows Program, HRP seeks to give thoughtful individuals with a demonstrated commitment to human rights an opportunity to step back and conduct a serious inquiry in the human rights field. Learn more about the program here and see below for details on the incoming cohort.
Adejoké Babington-Ashaye is the OPIA / HRP Wasserstein Fellow for the 2019-2020 year. She is a versatile lawyer with over sixteen years of experience in public international law, human rights, international criminal law and the judicial settlement of disputes. She is actively engaged in the provision of technical support and training for national prosecution and investigation of international crimes. Currently Senior Counsel at the World Bank, Babington-Ashaye has worked at the International Court of Justice on the settlement of state disputes and at the International Criminal Court as an investigator. Her background includes campaigning for the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa, investigating human rights violations in Nigeria’s Niger Delta region, and conducting human rights policy research at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy. She is the co-editor and author of International Criminal Investigations: Law and Practice. Babington-Ashaye holds an LLB from the University of Buckingham and an LLM in Public International Law from the London School of Economics. She is a qualified Attorney in the State of New York.
At HRP, Babington-Ashaye will research the investigation and prosecution of conflict-related sexual violence as acts of terrorism.
Dr. Anton Burkov is the Chair of the Center of European Law and Strategic Litigation at the University of Humanities, as well as Director of the human rights NGO Sutyajnik. He has engaged in strategic litigation on a number of cases, including: Burkov v. Google (IT and privacy), Mikhaylova v. Russia (free legal aid), Sablina and Others v. Russia (secret organ harvesting), Korolevs v. Russia (rights of prisoners and their families to conjugal meetings, sex, and artificial insemination). He has authored numerous publications, including a chapter on, “The Use of European Human Rights Law in Russian Courts” in Russia and the European Court of Human Rights: The Strasbourg Effect (Eds. Lauri Mälksoo and Wolfgang Benedek, Cambridge University Press). He has received a fellowship from the Fulbright Visiting Scholars Program to be in residence at HRP for spring 2020.
At HRP, Dr. Burkov will be developing a curriculum on how to conduct strategic impact litigation.
Elena Dorothy Estrada-Tanck
Dorothy Estrada-Tanck is Assistant Professor of International Law and International Relations at the University of Murcia, Spain. She holds a PhD in Law from the European University Institute, an MSc in Political Theory from the London School of Economics, and an LLB from Escuela Libre de Derecho, Mexico City. In addition to her academic background, she has worked for the United Nations and state bodies and NGOs in Mexico, Italy, the U.S., and Spain. She focuses on issues of human rights, gender, and socio-economic justice. She is the author of Human Security and Human Rights under International Law: The Protections Offered to Persons Confronting Structural Vulnerability (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2016).
At HRP, she will be carrying out research on indirect discrimination from a comparative perspective, with a focus on the UN and regional human rights systems, for a book on economic, social, and cultural rights, as well as on international law and new technologies.
Sandra Fahy is an associate professor of anthropology in the Faculty of Liberal Arts and the Graduate Program in Global Studies at Sophia University, Tokyo. She holds a PhD from SOAS University of London. She is the author of two books about human rights in North Korea. The first studies the subjective experience of famine survival: Marching through Suffering: Loss and Survival in North Korea (New York: Columbia University Press 2015). The second scrutinizes violations committed by the DPRK, domestically and internationally, and the state’s use of video technology to spread denial of rights abuse allegations: Dying for Rights: Putting North Korea’s Rights Abuses on the Record (New York: Columbia University Press 2019).
At HRP, she will be working on a book project about state perpetrators who use audiovisual technology to deny rights violations.
Dr. Rashad Ibadov is the Director of the Law Program at ADA University, Baku, Azerbaijan and a visiting professor of law at the Catholic University of Lille, France. Dr. Ibadov received his Doctor of Laws (LLD) from the European University Institute, Florence, Italy (2007–2013), LLM from Lund University, Sweden (2004–2006) and LLB from Khazar University, Baku, Azerbaijan (1999-2003). Dr. Ibadov has been a researcher at the Graduate Program of Harvard Law School (2009–2010) and a visiting scholar at UC, Berkeley (Spring 2009). His areas of research interests include law and religion, political and legal philosophy, constitutional law, citizenship and identity in the post-Soviet space.
At HRP, Rashad will be studying the question of how the post-Soviet Muslim-majority states should respond to the constitutional challenges raised by groups divided by religion or by conscience, and, through these responses, thereby promote democracy, political justice, religious harmony and prosperity.
June 11, 2019
On June 11, 2019, the New Zealand Court of Appeal announced that it would block the extradition to China of Kyung Yup Kim for an alleged homicide. The Court cited New Zealand’s commitment to human rights and a reasonable fear that Mr. Kim would suffer torture or other abuse and lack of a fair trial in the Chinese criminal justice system. Human Rights Program Visiting Fellow Dr Tony Ellis, who is also a New Zealand barrister with Blackstone Chambers, has represented Mr. Kim for the last ten years.
In a press release, Dr. Ellis said that the nearly 100-page judgment should have “profound human rights importance” for New Zealand and the greater Common Law world. Following the Court’s decision, Justice Minister Andrew Little will be forced to consider the human rights situation in China, and whether or not to trust “diplomatic assurances given by China” that torture will not be used, and that Mr. Kim would receive a fair trial, said the New Zealand Herald. In The New York Times and elsewhere, Dr. Ellis stated that he was hopeful the judgment would remain undisturbed, given Prime Minister Arden’s and the Labour government’s focus on human rights and criminal justice reform, as well as favorable circumstances around the makeup of the Court, and the powerful precedent they have set in this decision.
In quashing the extradition order, New Zealand joins its neighbor Australia in concerns over Chinese human rights abuses and its implications for extradition. Over the past week, protesters have taken to Hong Kong streets, demonstrating against a proposed law that would likewise allow for extradition to mainland China.
Dr. Ellis has been in residence at Harvard Law School’s Human Rights Program for the Spring Semester of 2019. Here, he focuses his research on the arbitrary detention of the intellectually disabled within an international setting.
May 9, 2019
The Human Rights Program is pleased to present its 2019-2020 Post-Graduate Fellowship Cohort. This year, we have awarded Satter and Henigson Fellowships to five remarkable 2019 Harvard Law School graduates: Terence (Terry) Flyte, Imani Franklin, Rez Gardi, Daniel Levine-Spound, and Nerissa Naidoo. HRP’s post-graduate fellowships are designed to help launch the careers of students who have demonstrated great promise as advocates and shown dedication to human rights while here at the Law School. Learn more about the new fellows and their projects below.
Terence Flyte LLM’19 is a Satter Fellow in Human Rights who will work with Legal Action Worldwide in Beirut, Lebanon. During his fellowship, Terry will represent survivors of sexual violence perpetrated during the Syrian civil war. He will focus on empowering survivors to advocate for themselves, establishing survivors’ associations, and assisting these associations in planning and carrying forward their pursuit for justice. In a partnership project between LAW and the Mukwege Foundation, Terry will contribute to a reparation and rehabilitation framework for survivors of sexual violence. He will also assist in preparing the case for Shanti Mohila, a group of Rohingya women subjected to sexual violence during clearance operations in Myanmar, in proceedings before the International Criminal Court.
Terry developed a commitment to tackling sexual violence while working on a clinical project researching conflict-related sexual violence in situations of detention in the International Human Rights Clinic, as well as during his time as a member of the legal team for the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry. He has a strong interest in access to justice issues, having been involved in projects aimed at improving the treatment of vulnerable individuals in UK social security appeals, and highlighting problems in immigration detention hearings in Scotland. As passionate writing about international law as practicing it, Terry was one of the legal researchers that contributed to Oppenheim’s “International Law Volume III.” He holds an LLB with First Class Honours from the University of Glasgow.
Imani Franklin JD’19 is a joint JD-MPP student at Harvard Law School and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. As a Satter Fellow, she will work with the International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) in Beirut, Lebanon. At IRAP, she will focus on transitional justice and resettlement for Syrian refugees. In this capacity, she will work with Syrian human rights defenders to document the abuses they’ve faced in hopes of seeking accountability for perpetrators and seeking safe resettlement to third countries.
During law school, she served as a clinical student in the International Human Rights Clinic and the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic. She is a member of HLS’s IRAP chapter, the Black Law Students Association, and the Harvard Law Review. Over the summers during graduate school, Imani has interned with: the Southern Center for Human Rights, Public International Law and Policy Group (PILPG), DOJ’s Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section, Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Labor and Social Development, and Mercy Corps in the West Bank and Gaza. She previously worked at the Ford Foundation and with the youth empowerment nonprofit Think Unlimited in Amman, Jordan. Imani graduated in 2013 from Stanford University, where she majored in international relations and minored in Arabic.
Rez Gardi LLM’19 is a Satter Fellow in Human Rights who will work with the Free Yezidi Foundation in Duhok, in the Kurdish Region of Iraq. During her Fellowship, Rez will gather evidence of the targeted genocidal campaign carried out by ISIS against the Yezidis, including mass executions, kidnapping, torture, sexual violence, and other egregious human rights abuses, using a victim-centric approach. This evidence will be used to build cases in collaboration with relevant European and Iraqi/Kurdish authorities to prosecute the perpetrators.
Rez is a Fulbright Scholar from New Zealand. During her time at HLS she was involved in the International Human Rights Clinic, served as Co-Director for Programming for Advocates for Human Rights, as an Executive Article Editor for the Human Rights Journal, and held various positions on the International Law Journal, and Women’s Law Association.
Prior to HLS, Rez worked as a legal officer at the New Zealand Human Rights Commission; as a solicitor in the disputes and litigation team of New Zealand’s preeminent law firm; and as a human rights intern at the United Nations Human Settlements Program in Nairobi, Kenya. As a former refugee, she is passionate about supporting young refugees and founded Empower Youth Trust to address the underrepresentation of refugees in higher education. She holds an LLB (Honours) and a BA double majoring in international relations and criminology from the University of Auckland.
Daniel Levine-Spound JD’19 is a Satter Fellow in Human Rights who will work with the Center for Civilians in Conflict (CIVIC) in Mali and the Democratic Republic of Congo on their Peacekeeping Program. At HLS, Daniel spent three semesters in the International Human Rights Clinic, served as co-President of Advocates for Human Rights, co-founded the Progressive Jewish Alliance, and conducted research with several professors on international humanitarian law, counterterrorism, and disarmament. He recently co-authored a book, A History of the Criminalization of Homosexuality in Tunisia, tracing the history and contemporary application of the Tunisian sodomy law.
Prior to law school, Daniel worked at the Euro- Mediterranean Human Rights Network and the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies in Tunis; taught high school English and interned at Human Rights Watch on a Fulbright grant in Paris; and worked as a researcher at C Global Consulting, where he designed a course in conflict resolution. He graduated from Brown University with honors in Comparative Literature in 2012.
Nerissa Naidoo LLM’19 is a Fulbright scholar from Durban, South Africa. As a Henigson Fellow, she will work at Social Media Exchange (SMEX) in Lebanon. SMEX focuses on Internet policy research and digital advocacy in the Middle East and globally. From issues around freedom of expression and open governance to privacy and surveillance, Nerissa will contribute to SMEX’s work in advancing human rights norms in a digital world. In particular, Nerissa will map and analyze the impacts of legal frameworks in digital environments, enabling civil society organisations and human rights defenders to view the operation of digital rights across jurisdictions around the globe.
Having grown up in the Global South and on the Internet, Nerissa has always been curious about the experiences of minorities online and is interested in the intersection of technology, identity and society. She’s blogged about ending violence against children for UNICEF, contributed to the Health Professions Council of South Africa’s Ethical Guidelines on Social Media Use for Doctors, and wrote her graduate dissertation on copyright protection for Black Twitter’s memes via cultural intellectual property principles. She serves as the Communications Director for Harvard Law School’s Advocates for Human Rights, the Social Media Chair for the Harvard African Law Association, and is also on the boards of the Harvard Human Rights and Business Association and Global South Dialogue. She graduated with her LLB degree summa cum laude from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in April 2018.