Human Rights Talks
Human Rights Talks: Freedom is not a crime

Human Rights Talks: Freedom is not a crime

October 26, 2020

In 2017-1018, images of Iranian women protesting the Islamic government by taking off their headscarves in public were seen around the world. Shaparak Shajarizadeh was one of these women. In 2018, she photographed herself in front of one of the busiest squares of Teheran, hoisting her hijab overhead on a stick for all to see. This same picture is now on the cover of a new book titled “La liberté n’est pas un crime” in which she and journalist Rima Elkouri tell her story of how she became an activist fighting for women’s rights and how she came to participate in the #WhiteWednesday movement. She also recounts her arrests, her time in prison and finally her flight from Iran. Today, she has found refuge in Toronto but she continues to fight for women’s rights and basic freedoms.

In this unique bilingual event, Shaparak Shajarizadeh and Rima Elkouri will discuss Shaparak’s decision to stand up to the Iranian government, the role of women in protest movements in Iran, her decision to flee her country and to continue her activism in Canada.

This is a bilingual event and will be streamed on our YouTube channel as well as our Facebook.

Speakers:

- Rima Elkouri, journalist at La Presse and co-author of “La liberté n’est pas un crime”

- Shaparak Shajarizadeh, Iranian activist and co-author of “La liberté n’est pas un crime”

Decoding Hate Speech - Technology and hate speech: friend or foe?

Decoding Hate Speech - Technology and hate speech: friend or foe?

October 8, 2020

Can information and communication technologies still be used for positive change and democracy, and if so, how? How can we prevent Big Tech from profiting from online harm and once again become a tool for positive change? What tools, mechanisms and approaches can be used by states, civil society and the private sector to counter online hate?

The second session of the “Decoding Hate Speech” series addressed the complexity of this social media phenomenon with an informed and multi-partied approach to prevent the harmful effects of Big Tech on human rights, and develop strategies to make technologies work for the benefit of our societies.

Kyle Matthews, Executive Director of the Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies, speaks to Savita Pawnday (Deputy Executive Director of the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect), Meetali Jain (Legal Director at Avaaz), and Christopher Tuckwood (Executive Director of The Sentinel Project).

Human Rights Talks (FR): De l’antisémitisme à la théorie du Deep-State

Human Rights Talks (FR): De l’antisémitisme à la théorie du Deep-State

September 24, 2020

Les théories du complot ont gagné en population et visibilité depuis le début de la pandémie de la COVID-19, visant tout particulièrement certaines communautés culturelles et religieuses. Ce panel aborde la question des théories du complots et leurs liens avec les discours haineux. Nous parlons des contextes de crise dans lesquels ils prennent racines, des mécanismes de diffusion en ligne, et de certaines bonnes pratiques d’information et d’éducation permettant de lutter contre ce phénomène.

 

-Marie-Eve Carignan, Directrice du Pôle Médias, Chaire UNESCO en prévention de la radicalisation et de l’extrémisme violents (Chaire UNESCO-PREV)
- Jeff Yates, Journaliste, Radio Canada, "Les Décrypteurs"
- Rudy Reichstadt, Conspiracy Watch
- Marie Lamensch, Coordinatrice de projet, MIGS
Human Talks: Special Series - Decoding Hate Speech

Human Talks: Special Series - Decoding Hate Speech

September 3, 2020

In recent years, hate-fueled rhetoric in public discourse and in the media have been on the rise around the world. By revolutionizing the way we communicate and interact, the Internet and social media have considerably amplified this phenomenon. National and international responses to this global phenomenon have been uneven. Some governments are hesitant to regulate freedom of speech while governments with authoritarian tendencies have imposed social media rules to crack down on activists and journalists. Big Tech Companies, meanwhile, have failed to strongly address online hate speech.

Alarmed by the increase of hate speech around the globe, the UN Secretary-General launched the UN Strategy and Plan of Action on Hate Speech in 2019, which proposes a holistic approach to identify, address and counter hate speech. However, progress has been slow, despite rising calls for regulations and codes of conduct.

The first panel of the “Decoding Hate Speech” series addresses the complexity of this phenomenon with an informed, nuanced and multi-partied approach to identify and counter hate speech as a potential factor conducive to human rights violations and atrocity crimes.

Featuring

  • Mô Bleeker, Special Envoy for Dealing with the Past and Atrocity Prevention at the Swiss Federal Department of Federal Affairs
  • Representative of United Nations Office for Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect
  • Katarzyna Gardapkhadze, Officer in Charge, OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights
  • Lieutenant-General Romeo Dallaire, Founder of the Child Soldiers Initiative and MIGS Distinguished Fellow
Human Rights Talks: Journalist Kareem Shaheen on the situation in Lebanon and the Middle East

Human Rights Talks: Journalist Kareem Shaheen on the situation in Lebanon and the Middle East

August 17, 2020

Kareem Shaheen is a journalist and former The Guardian correspondent for the Middle East. He discussed the current situation in Beyrouth, corruption within the Lebanese government, and the uncertain future Lebanese people face. He also spoke about the situation in Syria and the future of the Middle East.

 

Kareem Shaheen is a journalist and columnist based in Montreal. He is the former Middle East and Turkey correspondent for The Guardian, and was previously based in Istanbul, Beirut and Abu Dhabi. He was nominated for a Frontline Club Award for print journalism for his coverage of the Khan Sheikhun chemical attack. He holds a master’s degree in war studies from King’s College London.

Human Rights Talks: Param Preet Singh (HRW) on the Rohingya genocide case

Human Rights Talks: Param Preet Singh (HRW) on the Rohingya genocide case

August 13, 2020
In November 2019, The Gambia, with the backing of the 57 members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, filed a case before the ICJ alleging that Myanmar's atrocities against the Rohingya in Rakhine State violates the Genocide Convention. Last January, the ICJ ordered Myanmar to take immediate measures to prevent the genocide of the Rohingya.
 
Param-Preet Singh speaks about the decade-long systematic persecution of the Rohingya, the surge of violence since 2017 and developments at the United Nations and the ICJ.
 
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Param-Preet Singh is associate director in the International Justice Program. She focuses on creating paths to credible national and international justice for victims of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide. She has conducted on-the-ground fact-finding missions and authored reports and briefing papers on accountability efforts in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Côte d’Ivoire. In addition, Singh has worked on advocacy campaigns to address the mass human rights violations in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and in Myanmar.  
Human Rights Talks: Marking the 6th anniversary of the Yazidi Genocide

Human Rights Talks: Marking the 6th anniversary of the Yazidi Genocide

August 3, 2020

To mark the 6th anniversary of the Yazidi Genocide, the Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies, in partnership with Yazda, hosted a discussion on justice, trauma, and what the future looks like for Yazidi survivors, particularly women and children.

 

- Ahmed Shaheed , UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief.

- Natia Navrouzov, Yazda. 

- Nicolette Waldman, Amnesty International.  

- Hala Safel, Yazidi genocide survivor

- Kyle Matthews, Executive Director, MIGS 

The Coronavirus Diaries - UNHCR Representative in Yemen, Jean-Nicolas Beuze

The Coronavirus Diaries - UNHCR Representative in Yemen, Jean-Nicolas Beuze

July 21, 2020
Jean-Nicolas Beuze is the UNHCR representative in Yemen. He talks about the ongoing conflict, how COVID19 is affecting Yemen and how the UNHCR has shifted its operations. COVID-19 will be the straw that breaks the camel's back in this conflict-ridden country.
Follow him at @jnbeuze
 
Jean-Nicolas Beuze worked for more than 20 years with the United Nations in the areas of Human Rights (OHCHR), Peacekeeping (DPKO) and UNICEF at Headquarters and in the field (Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda, Afghanistan and the Middle-East and North Africa region) before joining UNHCR in Lebanon as Deputy Representative for Protection and Inter-Agency Coordination. Prior to joining UNHCR, he was the UNICEF Child Protection Advisor for the MENA region (2010-13) working on emergency responses in Iraq, Libya, Sudan, Syria and Yemen, and strengthening public child protection and education systems in the region. He was previously appointed as the Deputy Director of the Human Rights Unit of UN Peace-Keeping/DPKO mission in Afghanistan/UNAMA (2008-10) focusing on women’s rights, elections, poverty and the protection of civilians. He

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Online Hate Speech and the Santa Clara Principles

Online Hate Speech and the Santa Clara Principles

July 8, 2020

The Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies hosted a conversation on how the Santa Clara Principles can guide content moderation and platform governance on the issues of hate speech and incitement to commit violence.

As a result of pandemic and the BLM protests, many tech companies have made changes to the way they moderate content. What does it mean for users and for society as whole ? As these steps relevant?

- David Greene, Senior Staff Attorney & Civil Liberties Director at the Electronic Frontier Foundation

- Heidi Tworek, Associate Professor in International History and Public Policy at UBC

- Chris Beall, Policy Lead for Platform Governance at the Centre for International Governance Innovation

Canada Launch of the Global Peace Index : Measuring peace in a complex world

Canada Launch of the Global Peace Index : Measuring peace in a complex world

June 23, 2020

The Institute for Economics and Peace recently published the 2020 Global Peace Index. The Index outlines key 2020 highlights, global rankings, regional overviews as well as country improvements and deterioration in peace. Uniquely, this edition will cover three new topics: trends in civil unrest, ecological threats, and the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to the Index, IEP also released a special briefing on COVID-19 and Peace. It discusses the changes in socio-economic systems and considers the repercussions of such changes on patterns of violence and conflict.

Featured Guests:

Lieutenant-General the Honourable Roméo A. Dallaire

Serge Stroobants, Director of Operations, Europe & MENA, Institute for and Economics and Peace

Senator Marilou McPhedran , Canadian Senator and founder of The Institute for International Women’s Rights

Ferry de Kerckhove, former Ambassador

Moderator: Kyle Matthews, Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies

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