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Hmn Rgts & Terrorism Sem (LAW-739A-001)
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In the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks in the United States, many government officials and policy makers in the US and other liberal democracies, such as Britain, claimed that the rules had changed and that it was unrealistic to uphold well-established human rights norms in responding to this new global threat. These and many other states began hastily to introduce, both overtly and covertly, new counter-terrorism measures and policies which, according to human rights treaty bodies and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), violated core human rights in the name of countering terrorism.
This research seminar examines the impact that key laws and policies adopted in the US and other countries after the 9/11 attacks have had globally on the rule of law, international human rights and, where applicable, international humanitarian law, (the law of armed conflict). Among the topics that students will explore are: Can respect for human rights actually assist counter-terrorism efforts? Are past experiences with terrorism relevant to the contemporary terrorist threat? Should terrorist suspects ever be subjected to torture? What are the significance and consequences of the US War on Terror? Have the enhanced powers of intelligence services world-wide and intelligence sharing contributed to serious human rights violations, such as torture? What impact have counter-terrorism measures had on the civilian justice system? Should military or special courts try terrorist suspects? The assigned reading are global in scope, drawing on cases from, inter alia, the US, the United Kingdom and human rights treaty bodies, such as the European Court of Human Rights, and the reports and publications of Human Rights Watch, the International Commission of Jurists and other respected NGOs.
Textbooks and Other Materials
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Reading materials have been posted to MyWCL.
First Class Readings
Assignment posted to MyWCL.
The syllabus is available in the following format(s):