International Women’s Day
March 8, 2021
On International Women’s Day, the Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law would like to highlight the work of the Academy’s leadership team, remarkable faculty, and accomplished students. There is no doubt that their commitment to continue to promote and advocate for Human Rights will have a global impact.
Academy Leadership Team
On June 29, 2020, Professor Claudia Martin, Professorial Lecturer in Residence and Co-director of the Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, and Professor Susana SaCouto, Director of the War Crimes Research Office at WCL, published an article “Access to Justice for Victims of Conflict-related Sexual Violence: Lessons Learned from the Sepur Zarco Case,” a groundbreaking case on criminal accountability for conflict-related sexual violence. The article was published in the Journal for International Criminal Justice (JICJ). Access the article here: http://bit.ly/MartinandSaCouto
In October of 2020, Professor Claudia Martin, on behalf of the Academy of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and in collaboration with the Women's Rights and Gender Section of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the War Crimes Research Office at the American University Washington College of Law and the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies of Leiden University, held a two-day online expert meeting on Strategic Litigation on Gender-Based Violence in Latin America. Legal practitioners, including litigators, prosecutors, and judges, discussed issues related to charging strategies, modes of liability, reparations, and the implementation of judicial decisions in gender-based violence cases, in particular sexual violence, in contexts of repression and insecurity in the region. UN representatives, diplomatic personnel, and private donors were invited to join and participate in the last of these sessions, focused on strategies to best support and accompany victims and the links between strategic litigation and feminist movements. An outcome report of the event will be available soon. As a result of the meeting the Red Latinoamericana de Litigio Estratégico en Materia Género, a new network on strategic litigation on gender violence, was established.
Additionally, as part of her work with GQUAL, a campaign to promote gender parity in international organs and tribunals, Professor Martin published El artículo 8 de la Convención sobre la eliminación de todas las formas de discriminación contra la Mujer: un peldaño esencial para asegurar la paridad de género en órganos y tribunales internacionales (Article 8 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women: An Essential Step to Ensure Gender Parity in International Bodies and Courts), in Tratado de Géneros, Derechos y Justicia, Derecho Penal y Sistema Judicial, Tomo I, Marisa Herrera, Silvia E. Fernández, Natalia de la Torre, Directoras Generales, Carolina A. Videtta, Coordinadora General, María Fernanda López Puleio, Coordinadora de la Sección Sistema Judicial, Rubinzal-Culzoni Editores, Buenos Aires, Argentina, 2020.
We also celebrate our students from the LL.M. in International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, who volunteered countless hours transcribing interviews of the victims, and aided in documenting the extraordinary efforts of survivors and civil society organizations to achieve justice in the Sepur Zarco case. Also, our students helped in the coordination of the Expert meeting on Strategic Litigation on Gender-Based Violence in Latin America organized by the Academy of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and the War Crimes Research Office at the American University Washington College of Law, the Women's Rights and Gender Section of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies of Leiden University, and are currently doing research for the final report. Our appreciation goes out to Mercy Lopez, Florencia Tome Fuentes, Carolina Uribe, Nancy Granadillo and Belen Esteves. We are grateful for their work and exceptional commitment.
On January 4, 2021, our current student, Isabelle Chaudry, in her current work at the National Women's Health Network (NWHN), published an article on the abuses on women in ICE detention centers. We are proud to share her publication, "The Human Rights Abuses Against Black and Brown Women Occurring at ICE Detention Facilities Must Stop." Read the full article here: https://bit.ly/3nntRkF
We would like to congratulate, Cruz Sánchez de Lara, current HRHL LLM student, lawyer and vice president of the Board of Directors of EL ESPAÑOL. Cruz has been awarded one of the March 8 Recognitions of the Community of Madrid that rewards the personal and professional careers of seven women committed to equality for their merits and capacities on International Women's Day. Read the full article here: http://bit.ly/3ry00ZG
Lastly, this upcoming summer, from June 1st to June 18th, 2021 the Academy will host a select group of women human rights experts to teach in the Program of Advanced Studies on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, the summer component of the LL.M. in International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law. These women experts include:
- Elizabeth Abi-Mershed, who brings over 25 years of experience working at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), along with Viviana Waisman, Founder, President, and Executive Director, Women's Link Worldwide, they will teach the course Women and International Human Rights Law.
- Catalina Botero, former Rapporteur on Freedom of expression (OAS) and currently Co-chair of Facebook’s Oversight Board, the board created to ensure respect for free expression, through independent judgment, will teach Libertad de Expresión (Freedom of expression).
- Helen Duffy, founder of Human Rights in Practice in the Netherlands, will enrich the conversation on human rights protection from a civil society perspective in the course, International Justice for Human Rights Violations.
- Siobhan McInerney-Lankford, serves as Senior Counsel at The World Bank, and will be joined by Margaret Roggensack, Director of Market Engagement at Humane Society International, to teach the class Human Rights and Development.
- Tara Melish, Director and Professor of Law at Buffalo Human Rights Center, SUNY Buffalo Law School, will teach the course Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, alongside Flavia Piovesan, Commissioner, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, (OAS). This course aims to evaluate the doctrinal concepts and practical strategies used by advocates in efforts to ensure the effective protection of economic, social and cultural rights across international, regional and national systems of human rights protection.
- Macarena Saez, Fellow in International Legal Studies and Director of the Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law at American University Washington College of Law teach the course, The Rights of Disadvantaged and Vulnerable Groups. The class explores different case law and legislation that aims to protect vulnerable groups in the United States and across the globe.
- Viviana Krsticevic, Executive Director, Center for Justice and International Law, Washington, D.C., will teach the course Litigio y Activismo en Derechos Humanos (Human Rights Litigation and Activism). The course offers diverse perspectives on international and national human rights activism, the role of non-governmental organizations, and the importance of international oversight mechanisms.
- Julissa Mantilla, Commissioner, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Organization of American States (OAS), and Daniela Kravetz, Former Rapporteur on the State of Affairs of Human Rights in Eritrea, United Nations, will join us to teach the course, Mujeres y el Derecho Internacional de los Derechos Humanos (Women and International Human Rights Law). This course explores the international human rights framework, and how it is applied or should be applied to guarantee human rights to women.
- Hélène Tigroudja, Member, Human Rights Committee, United Nations and Elizabeth Salmón, Member, Human Rights Council Advisory Committee, United Nations will teach the course Derecho Internacional Humanitario (International Human Rights Law). This course offers a general approach to International Humanitarian Law from its most basic notions, including conceptual aspects and some of its most recent normative jurisprudential developments.
- Lastly, Claudia Martin, Co-director and Professorial Lecturer in residence, Academy of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, American University Washington College of Law, Washington D.C. Will teach the course Sistema Interamericano de Derechos Humanos (Inter-American System of Human Rights). This course will address the development of human rights in the Inter-American System and the way in which the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights protect those rights within the framework of their respective mandates.
We are so proud to have the brightest minds in the human rights field joining us this summer!
Upcoming events in Celebration of Women’s Month
In celebration of Women’s month, the Academy will host Celebrating Bright Minds: Important Conversations with Women Experts in the Human Rights Field, a two-discussion series addressing human rights violations against women capturing diverse global perspectives of reoccurring abuses.
Mark your calendars and stay tuned for the announcement of the two speakers:
- Discussion 1 – “Avances y desafíos de la justicia para prevenir y sancionar los femi(ni)cidios en América Latina.” (Advances and challenges of justice to prevent and punish femicides in Latin America) (March 18th, 12:00 pm (EST) – This event will be in Spanish. Register here: http://bit.ly/Celebrandoeldiadelamujer
- Discussion 2 – “Reproductive Rights: Navigating Global Health Challenges.” March 25, 12:00 pm (EST) – This event will be in English. Register here: http://bit.ly/Celebratingwomensday