Poster

‘Camps That Are Becoming Cities – Cities That Are Becoming Camps : The Case of Syrian Refugees in Lebanon and Jordan

The Oppenheimer Chair is pleased to welcome Faten Kikano, PhD Candidate in Environmental Design, from the Université de Montréal for a conference and a photo exhibition. Ms. Kikano will present her research and her photos about the life of  Syrian refugees in camps in Lebanon and Jordan. Join us for a lunch, a short conference…
Sonia Cancian Poster
lundi, 27 mars 2017

The Power of Life Stories : Situating the Narratives of Migrants and Refugees within the Context of the Law

The Oppenheimer Chair and the McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism are pleased to welcome Dr. Sonia Cancian, from Zayed University for a seminar on life stories of migrants and refugees and the law. This seminar will lead a discussion on life stories of migrants and refugees and their power (or not) within…
 

Is the World ready for Global Justice ?

Conference of William A. Schabas, Frédéric Mégret, Nidal Jurdi and moderated by François Crépeau
7 septembre 2017

The McGill Center for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism hereby invites you to its big conference of William A. Schabas moderated by François Crépeau and followed by a discussion with Frédéric Mégret and Nidal N. Jurdi.

As you know, 2017 is a very pivotal year for international criminal justice. It marks the 72nd anniversary of the establishment of the Nuremberg Military Tribunals, the 71st anniversary of the establishment of military tribunals in the Far East, a special year for the United Nations ad hoc tribunals in the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda both of which are in a gradual completion of their respective mandates and without forgetting the anniversary of the entry into force of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

15 years after the establishment of this judicial institution as a permanent body with a universal vocation operating under the new premise of complementarity to national jurisdictions, this tribunal is now at a crossroads : high-level state officials accused for having committed grave crimes continue to travel around the world, key witnesses are assassinated, charges have been dropped by the office of the prosecutor itself, preliminary examinations stagnate whenever the most powerful are concerned. In Syria, as well as in every situation where nationals of the permanent members of the Security Council or their allies are concerned, it is a total inactivity. Even where the judicial system seems to be moving forward, the immunities of heads of state on the one hand and, most seriously, immunities for heads of non-state parties on the other hand, have come to poison the procedure. On the African side, some states start slamming the door of the Court while building a relatively parallel system at a regional level.

In light of all these challenges in the institutionalization of the universality of international justice, seven decades after the Nuremberg and Tokyo Tribunals, more than two decades after the creation of ad hoc tribunals and in view of all the challenges faced by the ICC in only 15 years of operation, the McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism organizes this timely conference that brings together different perspectives on this unique and topical theme : “Is the world ready for global justice ?”

Date : September 14th 2017  from 10am-11:30 am 

Place : McGill Law Faculty, Moot Court Room. 

Postal Address : 3644, Peel Street (New-Chancellor-Day Hall), Montreal, Canada. 

Price : the event is free of charge but registration is mandatory (RSVP : chrlp.law@mcgill.ca) 

You can find the event description also on Facebook.

To access the Live Stream Video Recording, please click here

  The aftermath of a Syrian Air Force strike on the Ain Tarma neighbourhood of Damascus. Photo Credit: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

Living in a void : life in Damascus after the exodus

Article in The Guardian
25 août 2017

An excellent article about those who stay home and receive news of those who have gone abroad. Many thanks to Raoul

« I would like to say something along the lines of how the refugees are Syria’s loss and the world’s gain, but I’m not sure that’s entirely true. Abandoning one’s identity is like ripping a heart out of a body. I think of the families of friends who have migrated en masse. For example, I received a phone call from the father of a friend, a man over 70 years old, who spoke to me in tears. He just wanted to speak to someone who understood his language, who understood the secrets of the language, who would listen to a joke in his version of colloquial Syrian and who would have a hearty laugh with him. A hearty laugh – that’s a metaphor for the way people like to live, and refugees in general do not find many reasons to laugh, especially in their first years in exile. But not long after that conversation, the phones stopped ringing. Everyone had dropped into the black hole of exile. »

To access the full article, please click here

 

Opening the Door to a New Solution

Article in Forced Migration Forum
27 juillet 2017

A truly excellent novel, now long-listed for the Booker Prize, about how the world could adapt to global mobility, and how individuals strive creatively when given mobility opportunities.

« Today, there are over 65.3 million forcibly displaced people worldwide. Of those, over 21 million are refugees. 21 million individuals have been forced to move from their homes in search of safety elsewhere. In our world today, refugees move through borders and swim through oceans ; in Mohsin Hamid’s world in Exit West, refugees move by stepping through doors. Hamid offers readers (and perhaps even refugees themselves) a new lens through which to view and understand refugees : agency. The thread of agency is apparent throughout the novel – from the choices the characters make about their clothes and lifestyle, to decisions about the kind of life they want to live. However, the more apparent fact is that agency is dependent on mobility ;  refugees need mobility to exercise agency over their lives. »

To access the full article, please click here

Populism and Migration

Prof. François Crépeau @ The Conference on “Populism and European Policies: The Challenges Ahead” World Trade Institute, 22-23 June 2017
7 juillet 2017

  South African soldiers apprehend irregular migrants from Zimbabwe. Photo Credit: Guy Oliver/IRIN

Securitising Africa’s borders is bad for migrants, democracy, and development

Article in IRIN
6 juillet 2017

Seeing Europe export to Africa its worst border policies – based on repression, detention, expulsion and separation of families, considered as an appropriate deterrent for undocumented migration – and spending “development” funds for capacity building of African “integrated border management” systems is tragic. So much money, time and energy spent for naught, and such a toxic discourse being “adapted” to the African context !

Africa certainly has difficulties guaranteeing the rights of undocumented migrant workers, but it is not through repression that their situation will be made better. It is through regularisation processes which will empower them to claim their rights and through the availability of many more regular, safe, affordable and accessible mobility options, such as electronic travel authorisation mechanisms, visa liberalisation agreements (with dispense of short term visas) and visa facilitation for all kinds of visas (family reunification, student, retiree, internships, au pair, work permit, looking for work, etc.) which will allow most of them to circulate regularly and avoid finding themselves trapped in the vicious circle of migrant smuggling and underground labour markets.

Exporting one’s mobility problems to another continent by encouraging them to do what has utterly failed at home is not a solution. It will neither produce development in Africa, nor will it reduce unauthorised mobility to Europe. It will increase the precariousness of migrant workers everywhere, and push them further in the underground, in the hands of smugglers, unscrupulous recruiters and exploitative employers. And it will encourage authoritarian regimes to use anti-terrorism, anti-smuggling and anti-trafficking rhetoric to justify abhorrent human rights and labour rights violations.

One would expect much better from a continent that “invented” the human rights doctrine.

To access the article, please click here