Strengthened leadership in troubled times: Iceland’s role at the UN Human Rights Council

Tuesday May 14, from 12:15 - 13:15 in Oddi 201, University of Iceland

An open seminar hosted by Höfði Reykjavik Peace Centre at the University of Iceland

Strengthened leadership in troubled times: Iceland’s role at the UN Human Rights Council

This is a time of global human rights challenge, and threats to the international rights framework. Autocratic leaders and xenophobic populists in regions around the world have cracked down on dissenting voices. Human rights defenders and journalists are at risk.

When the United States resigned from the UN Human Rights Council last year, Iceland was elected to fill the vacant seat, and will serve until the end of 2019. Can one state make a difference in such troubled times? Join us for a discussion with Human Rights Watch on how Iceland has performed on the big stage, what it has been able to contribute, and how it should use the remainder of its time on the Human Rights Council to maximum effect.

John Fisher is Advocacy Director at Human Rights Watch´s office in Geneva. In this role, he leads the organization´s advocacy work at the Human Rights Council and other UN mechanisms in Geneva. Prior to his current role, John Fisher worked as Executive Director of the LGBT advocacy organization Egale Canada, taught human rights classes at the Universities of Ottawa and Carleton, and served as a Judges‘ clerk at the Auckland High Court in New Zealand.