Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Where Human Rights and Environmental Rights Collide

Yesterday, an Inter-American court ruled against Mexico in a case that involved threats, torture, and environmental degradation.  Two peasant ecologists, Rodolfo Montiel and Teodoro Cabrera, were trying to protect a mountain against illegal logging when they found themselves confronted by the Mexican army.

In 1999, the army arrested them for peacefully blocking roads, and the government charged them with bogus drug and weapons crimes.  Members of the army then beat the two men and threatened to harm their families.  Two years later, the international community pressured the Mexican government enough to release Montiel and Cabrera, but they were never pardoned.

Yesterday's decision held that the Mexican government had violated the men's rights to liberty, personal integrity, due process, and judicial protection.  The court ordered Mexico to pay damages to Montiel and Cabrera as to properly investigate the instances of torture they experienced so that those responsible can be brought to justice.

Before this ruling, the Mexican military investigated its own matters when the military was alleged to have engaged in illegal activity.  This often led to coerced confessions and substantive impunity.  Now, the government, not the military, must investigate the matter.  So far, Mexico has said that it would abide by the binding decision.

You can read the whole story here.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Hot News! Wikileaks!

Wikileaks files provide fresh evidence of Iraq torture
Amnesty International's Middle East expert Malcolm Smart says USA must investigate Wikileaks claims (right now, see the short video on the front page of http://www.amnesty.org/).

Read Amnesty International's article here:

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Lab-Created Diamond Photo

For those of you who would like to see an image of lab-created diamonds, here's a photo of me at my law school graduation, where I wore lab-created diamond earrings with a matching pendant.  :D  Ok, it's not the best photo, but it's all I have at the moment.  Here's another one, but you can't see the pendant as well as in the other one.


Alternative to Mined Diamonds

As many of you know, mined diamonds have and continue to lead to the torture and death of people around the world.

I've received many "thank you"s from people (especially law students) who have chosen alternatives to diamonds due to IHRLS's consciousness-raising efforts.  Some of those individuals chose to purchase and wear either recycled diamonds or lab-created diamonds (NOT CZs!) from Diamond Nexus Labs (you can find them here: http://www.diamondnexuslabs.com).

Thank you to everyone who has commented and made tiny changes for a big difference!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Let Me Tell You A Story: a short film's eye into world hunger

At this moment, you may be a lawyer, a law student, or a recent law graduate.  Perhaps you have no interest in the law, but you ARE interested in human rights.

Either way, this short 6-minute film is worth the time that you would otherwise spend on Facebook.

For me, personally, I'm studying for the bar.  Now, I feel like I've gained some much-needed perspective.  I hope you'll watch it and feel the same way.


Tuesday, June 08, 2010

How Not to Fight Mexico's Drug War

Monday, June 28, 2010
University of California, San Diego
6:30 pm - 7:45 pm
Cost: free, students; $10, public
Ken Roth will address whether human rights concerns should be a factor in withholding U.S. funding that supports Mexico’s fight against drug cartels (Merida Initiative). He will discuss the direct impact of the drug war on Mexican society and the nexus between drugs, security and human rights.

In 1993, Roth became executive director of Human Rights Watch (HRW), one of the largest human rights organizations in the world, which conducts fact-finding investigations into human rights abuses in over 80 countries.

A graduate of Yale Law School and Brown University, Roth was drawn to the human rights cause by his father's experience fleeing Nazi Germany in 1938. He began working on human rights after the declaration of martial law in Poland in 1981, and soon became deeply engaged in fighting military repression in Haiti. In his years as executive director, Human Rights Watch has quadrupled in size, while greatly expanding its thematic and geographic reach.
  • Event will be held at University of California, San Diego's Institute of the Americas in Hojel Hall of the Americas Auditorium. Visit the Institute of the Americas website for map and parking information.
  • Free for all students, press or faculty. Click here to register and indicate your affiliation in the notes section
  • $10 per person for public. To register using electronic payment, click here. To pay cash at the door, click here to register
Presented by Human Rights Watch and Institute of the Americas. Co-sponsored by Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice; San Diego World Affairs Council; Trans-Border Institute; and United Nations Association, San Diego
Joan B. Kroc Institute For Peace & Justice | ipj@sandiego.edu | (619) 260-7509

Friday, April 09, 2010

Poems from Guantanamo

Tuesday, May 4, 2010
Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice Theatre
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Cost: Free

A dramatic reading of selections from Poems from Guantanamo: The Detainees Speak will be followed by a panel presentation and then Q & A. 

Co-sponsored by Amnesty International, San Diego.

IPJ | ipj@sandiego.edu | 619-260-7509

IPJ Film Series: Killer's Paradise

Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice Theatre
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Cost: Free

Since 2000 nearly five thousand women have been murdered in Guatemala, a country with just 14 million people. “Killers’ Paradise” uncovers one of the most emotionally-wrenching hidden human rights abuses taking place, while exposing the impunity allowed by an inept judicial system.

The IPJ invites you to view this film that documents the stories of victims’ friends and families and the testimonies of police officers and investigators, rapists and gang members. Despite the frustration, anger and great sadness and loss, women and men are coming together for a common fight in the name of their daughters, wives and sisters.

Following the film there will be a panel discussion and then Q & A, with Christauria Welland, PsyD, clinical psychologist, and Jill Covert, alumna of the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies. Welland works with men in treatment for intimate partner violence and has carried out trainings in Guatemala to prevent such violence. Covert conducted the field research for her MA in Peace & Justice Studies, in Guatemala, resulting in a capstone project entitled “Women in Zones of Conflict: Femicide in Guatemala.”

The event will be introduced by Maria Pilar Aquino, STD, professor in Theology and Religious Studies.

Co-sponsored by Copley Library and Department of Theology and Religious Studies.
Please note that the film is unrated.  Harrowing scenes may make it unsuitable for younger viewers.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Celebration Breakfast: Women's History Month & International Women's Day

Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice
7:00 am - 9:30 am

The Sixth Annual Celebration of Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day will include a report from the 54th annual session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) at the United Nations in New York.

Tickets: $22, general admission; $8, student
For additional information about the breakfast please call (619) 260-7509.

Joan B. Kroc Institute For Peace & Justice | ipj@sandiego.edu | (619) 260-7509