Thursday 25 January from 12 to 13 in Askja 132 at the University of Iceland
An open seminar hosted by Höfði Reykjavík Peace Centre at the University of Iceland
The global rise of populist leaders, entrenchment of authoritarianism, and migration crisis at Europe’s shores, accompanied by an increase in xenophobia, racism, and Islamophobia, threatens to reverse the accomplishments of the modern human rights movement. What were the trends, successes, and challenges on the human rights front in 2017? What can governments, civil society, the media, and the public do in 2018 to push back against the global assault on human rights? What role does Iceland play, and how can it make a difference?
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 that time, 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
Laila Matar is the Senior UN Advocate at Human Rights Watch’s office in Geneva, responsible for advocacy work at the Human Rights Council and other UN mechanisms. Laila was previously UN Advocacy Representative for the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, conducting advocacy work on civil and political rights in the Middle East and North Africa region at the UN in Geneva and at the African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights.
Moderator: Margrét Steinarsdóttir, Director of the Icelandic Human Rights Centre