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Human Rights and Humanitarian Law in Occupied Iraq

In a joint event with the International Committee of the Red Cross, a distinguished panel of experts will speak on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law in Occupied Iraq on Tuesday 25 May at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

Speaking on the panel are:

  • Professor Christopher Greenwood QC, professor of international law, LSE
  • Professor Françoise Hampson, professor of law and co-director of the Children and Armed Conflict Monitoring Unit, University of Essex
  • Professor Philippe Sands QC, professor of law and director of the Centre of International Courts and Tribunals at University College London
  • Professor Ruth Wedgwood, Edward B Burling Professor of International Law and Diplomacy and director of International Law and Organization, Johns Hopkins University

It is now over a year since the successful conclusion of the American-led invasion of Iraq but the war continues to be controversial, with many remaining unreconciled to its outcome. The conflict was partly waged in the name of human rights and humanitarian principle, but how do these principles stand in Iraq today?

The panel will ask:

  • How effective is humanitarian law at achieving its aims in Iraq?
  • Are the rules of international law and the Geneva Conventions being followed?
  • What is the meaning of the right to democratic government in the context of present day Iraq?
  • And what international law duties, if any, does such a right impose, and on whom?

At a more abstract level, the situation in Iraq raises fundamental questions about the state of both international humanitarian and international human rights law. If there are breaches of these laws, is this because these are out-of-date and not suited to modern conditions, particularly in the context of anti-terrorism? And what are the implications for the regulation of international affairs?

Professor Conor Gearty, Rausing Director of the Centre for the Study of Human Rights at LSE, will chair this event.

Human Rights and Humanitarian Law in Occupied Iraq: current problems and future prospects is on Tuesday 25 May at 6pm in the Old Theatre, Old Building, LSE, Houghton Street, London WC2A. This event is free and open to all with no ticket required.

Ends

To reserve a press seat for this event, please contact Jessica Winterstein, LSE Press Office, on 020 7955 7060 or email j.Winterstein@lse.ac.uk| 

Notes:

This event is organised by the Centre for the Study of Human Rights, LSE, in association with the International Committee of the Red Cross.

Professor Christopher Greenwood QC
Christopher Greenwood has been professor of international law at LSE since 1996. He has appeared as counsel in a number of cases concerning international law in the International Court of Justice (including the Lockerbie case and the case on the use of force in Kosovo) and the English courts (including the Pinochet extradition case) and was appointed Queen's Counsel in 1999. He is joint editor of the International Law Reports and The Kuwait Crisis: basic documents and is currently completing The Modern Law of Armed Conflict (due to be published by Oxford University Press).

Professor Philippe Sands
Philippe Sands is professor of law and director of the Centre of International Courts and Tribunals at University College London, as well as co-director of the Project on International Courts an Tribunals (PICT). He has been a member of the Irish bar since January 2003 and has appeared before English and international courts. His publications include From Nuremberg to The Hague, Bowett's Law of International Institutions and Manual of International Courts and Tribunals.

Professor Françoise Hampson
Barrister Françoise Hampson is professor of law and co-director of the Children and Armed Conflict Monitoring Unit at the University of Essex. She is a governor of the British Institute of Human Rights and an independent expert member of the UN Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights. She has acted as a consultant on humanitarian law to the International Committee of the Red Cross. She represented Oxfam and SCF (UK) at the Preparatory Committee and first session of the Review Conference for the Certain Conventional Weapons Convention. She was honoured as Human Rights Lawyer of the Year in 1998 jointly with her colleague from the Centre, Professor Kevin Boyle.

Professor Ruth Wedgwood
Ruth Wedgwood is Edward B Burling Professor of International Law and Diplomacy and director of International Law and Organization, Johns Hopkins University. She is a US member of the United Nations Human Rights Committee, and, in the US, a member of the Secretary of State's Advisory Committee for International Law, the Defense Policy Board, the Department of Defense, and the CIA Historical Review Panel. She was an independent expert for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is an impartial, neutral and independent organization whose exclusively humanitarian mission is to protect the lives and dignity of victims of war and internal violence and to provide them with assistance. It directs and coordinates the international relief activities conducted by the Movement in situations of conflict. It also endeavours to prevent suffering by promoting and strengthening humanitarian law and universal humanitarian principles. Established in 1863, the ICRC is at the origin of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.

For more information on the Centre for the Study of Human Rights at LSE, visit http://www.lse.ac.uk/Depts/human-rights/|

19 May 2004

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