This week once again shows the impossibility of divorcing foreign policy from human rights. Human rights have been the focus of debate during David Cameron's visit to China and in the wake of the publication of George W Bush's autobiography.
(PRWeb UK) November 12, 2010
The Foreign Secretary William Hague has asked Professor Sir Nigel Rodley, chair of the Human Rights Centre at the University of Essex, to become a member of the new Advisory Group on Human Rights.
The key advisory group will be chaired by Mr Hague and includes leading international experts on human rights.
The aims of the group are to give the Foreign Secretary and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office access to the best possible information about human rights challenges so they can benefit from outside advice on the conduct of policy.
Sir Nigel said: “I am very pleased to have been selected for this advisory group at its inception.
“I think establishing this group is a bold move with members able to advise the Foreign Secretary on all aspects of human rights with regard to foreign policy.
“This week once again shows the impossibility of divorcing foreign policy from human rights. Human rights have been the focus of debate during David Cameron’s visit to China and in the wake of the publication of George W Bush’s autobiography.”
Mr Hague will chair two meetings a year while junior ministers and Foreign Office officials will chair additional meetings on key issues agreed by the group.
Mr Hague said: “Human rights are essential to and indivisible from the UK’s foreign policy priorities.
“The members of this group are eminent individuals with a broad range of human rights experience, drawn from NGOs, the legal and academic communities and international bodies. I am delighted that they have agreed to join this Group and look forward to working with them to improve and strengthen our international human rights work.”
Sir Nigel is a Member of the UN Human Rights Committee, a former UN Special Rapporteur on torture and currently a Commissioner of the International Commission of Jurists.
The Human Rights Centre at the University of Essex was awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize in 2010 for its work in advancing human rights and has an international reputation for the strength of its interdisciplinary team.
The new Institute for Democracy and Conflict Resolution (IDCR) is set to build on the University of Essex’s 40 years of practical and academic expertise in the field of human rights, justice and governance to become an international beacon for democracy.
World-renowned architect Daniel Libeskind was chosen in October to design the landmark building which will house the IDCR, which will be at the heart of the new Knowledge Gateway research park.
The full membership of the Advisory Group on Human Rights is: Kate Allen, Director of Amnesty International UK; Dr Chaloka Beyani, LSE and UN Special Rapporteur on Internally Displaced People; Dr Agnes Callamard, Director of Article 19; Mr Joel Edwards, International Director, Micah Challenge; Malcolm Evans OBE, University of Bristol, Member of the United Nations Sub-committee on the Prevention of Torture; Sapna Malik, Partner, Leigh Day and Co. Solicitors; Professor Susan Marks, LSE; Tim Otty QC, Blackstone Chambers; Tom Porteous, Director of Human Rights Watch, London; Sir Nigel Rodley, University of Essex, Member of the UN Human Rights Committee; Dame Barbara Stocking, Chief Executive of Oxfam GB; Professor Surya Subedi OBE, University of Leeds and UN Special Rapporteur for Cambodia and Sir Nicholas Young, Chief Executive, the British Red Cross.