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Melanie

Conference “Lawyers Without Borders Belgium-Lawyers Without Borders Canada: Decades of Fighting for Human Rights”

By | Upcoming Events

Lawyers Without Borders Canada and Lawyers Without Borders Belgium celebrate their anniversaries together! Come and listen to the executive directors of both organizations share their respective experiences in human rights advocacy, from their beginnings to the current challenges of international cooperation. The impact of shrinking democratic spaces on the missions of human rights organizations and the place of the next generation in their projects will also be discussed.

Speakers: 

  • Chantal Van Cutsem, Lawyers Without Borders Belgium executive director
  • Pascal Paradis, Lawyers Without Borders Canada executive director
  • Mathilde Doucet, PhD sutdent, Faculty of Law, Université Laval and intern at LWBC
  • Virginie Lefèbvre, research professional in charge of the Clinique de droit international pénal et humanitaire
  • Florian Manuch, PhD sutdent, Faculty of Law, Université Laval

Organized in collaboration with: 

Time: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Location: Room 2419, Charles-De Koninck Building

For information
cdiph.admin@fd.ulaval.ca

Registration Required – Registration Form

Victim of a massacre; the Canadian government ignores his call for help

By | Communiqués de presse, News

May 30, 2022, Ottawa – The Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, David Lametti, today refused to meet with Ramiro Osorio Cristales, one of the only survivors of a terrible massacre in Guatemala. Mr. Osorio Cristales, a Canadian citizen, has long demanded that Canada try  Jorge Vinicio Sosa Orantes, an alleged war criminal who actively participated in the massacre and who now lives in Canada, having obtained Canadian citizenship.

Lawyers Without Borders Canada (LWBC), which is accompanying Mr. Osorio Cristales and the Guatemalan association of relatives of the victims of the massacre (Familiares de desaparecidos de Guatemala – FAMDEGUA) in their quest for justice, was also present in Ottawa, on his behalf and as a representative of the Canadian Partnership for International Justice (CPIJ), to call on Minister Lametti to act. The Minister has the authority – indeed the duty – under the Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Act, as outlined in a statement supported by 18 organizations, which was prepared by LWBC in collaboration with CPIJ.

In 1982, the special unit of which Mr. Sosa Orantes was an officer entered the Guatemalan village of Las Dos Erres and massacred almost the entire civilian population, systematically exterminating men, women, children and newborns. Ramiro Osorio Cristales, then five years old, was one of only two survivors of this massacre.

In the statement, LWBC, CPIJ and the 18 supporting organizations call on:

  • the Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Program to review and document all allegations against Jorge Vinicio Sosa Orantes and to submit a request to the Attorney General of Canada to authorize a prosecution under the Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Act;
  • the Attorney General of Canada to consent to the prosecution of Jorge Vinicio Sosa Orantes for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed during the massacre of Las Dos Erres;
  • the Canadian government to assume its responsibilities towards alleged war criminals in Canada by activating its Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Program and ensuring that it has the necessary means to implement Canada’s obligations to fight impunity for crimes against humanity and war crimes.

Between June and August 2021, LWBC and CPIJ made numerous calls to the government to take action on this issue. These calls went unanswered.

Canada was one of the first countries to support investigations into crimes against humanity and war crimes committed in Ukraine since the Russian invasion. This strong commitment to international criminal justice must be equally strong in Canada. It is time for the Canadian government to act with courage by taking concrete steps to bring Mr. Sosa Orantes to justice. It is not acceptable that Mr. Sosa Orantes – who Canada itself says has committed crimes against humanity – continues to live freely on Canadian soil without being held accountable for these crimes.

Quotes

“I fled to Canada to live in safety, which I have been able to do for the past twenty years. This is no longer the case, one of the criminals who massacred my family, my friends, my village, lives freely in the country. Today, I am confident that the Canadian government will do the right thing: I ask the Minister of Justice, Mr. David Lametti, to initiate criminal proceedings against Jorge Vinicio Sosa Orantes.”

– Ramiro Osorio Cristales, survivor of the Las Dos Erres massacre

“Last June, we asked the government to act on the case of Jorge Vinicio Sosa Orantes. Almost a year later, we are still waiting for the government to act. Today, 18 organizations are joining Lawyers Without Borders Canada in calling for the same thing. Simply revoking citizenship is not enough. To truly fight impunity, Canada must take its responsibilities and bring Jorge Vinicio Sosa Orantes to justice to face charges of crimes against humanity.

– Pascal Paradis, Executive Director of LWBC

View the complete press record here.

2022 Katia-Boustany Conference «Faire et quitter son nid: retour vers le futur du droit international pénal et humanitaire»

By | News, Upcoming Events

On February 22, 2022, from 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., the SQDI’s 2022 Katia-Boustany Conferene invites you to travel back in time with professors William A. Schabas and Eric David!

Moderated by Professors Julia Grignon and Fannie Lafontaine, the lecture will revisit the most significant developments of the last 40 years in international criminal and humanitarian law, and will consider the different challenges that these fields of international law will face in the next 4 decades.

The conference is the work of a broad partnership, co-organized at Université Laval by the SQDI, the Canada Research Chair on International Criminal Justice and Fundamental Rights, the International Criminal and Humanitarian Law Clinic, the Osons le DIH! partnership development, the research project on the extraterritorial application of international human rights law, and the Canadian Partnership for International Justice, in collaboration with Quid Justitiae.

The conference will be presented online on the Zoom platform. Free admission.

Certificates of attendance will be issued to registered participants only.

Conference “The long march towards justice: reflections on the last 40 years of hopes and disappointments”

By | Upcoming Events

Juriste, négociateur et homme politique, Romeo Saganash a défendu pendant toute sa carrière les droits de la personne, en particulier ceux des Premières Nations. À l’occasion d’une conférence qui se déroulera le 24 novembre prochain, et dans un contexte où les injustices et les problèmes juridiques auxquels sont confrontés les peuples autochtones occupent plus que jamais l’espace public, il exposera les grands défis de sa carrière et échangera sur la transformation du discours politique.

Quoi : Conférence « La longue marche vers la justice : réflexions des 40 dernières années d’espoirs et de déceptions »
Quand : 24 novembre 2021 de 11 h 30 à 13 h
Où : Amphithéâtre Hydro-Québec, Pavillon Alphonse-Desjardins*

L’inscription à cette activité est obligatoire: https://bit.ly/3Fc7dFb

La conférence est organisée par la Faculté de droit de l’Université Laval en collaboration avec le Partenariat canadien pour la justice internationale, la Chaire de recherche du Canada pour la justice internationale et les droits fondamentaux et le Centre interuniversitaire d’études et de recherches autochtones.

*Veuillez noter qu’un passeport vaccinal ainsi qu’une pièce d’identité seront exigés à l’entrée de la salle.

Détails et informations : evenements@fd.ulaval.ca

Antigua and Barbuda and Tuvalu to seek Justice for Climate Change damage before International Courts

By | Communiqués de presse, News, Press Releases

Embassy of Antigua and Barbuda – Press Release

Edinburgh, October 31st, 2021…   The Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda – current Chair of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) – and the Prime Minister of Tuvalu today signed an historic accord that opens the way for ground-breaking litigation before international courts.  This offers a novel legal path to address the severe damage to Small Island States caused by climate change. 

The Agreement establishes a Commission of Small Island States on Climate Change and International Law, creating a body for the development and implementation of fair and just global environmental norms and practices.  The Commission is also authorized to request advisory opinions from the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) on the legal responsibility of States for carbon emissions, marine pollution, and rising sea levels.  

Membership in the Commission is open to all Small Island States whose leaders have long complained about the absence of effective mechanisms for States most responsible for climate change to compensate for the resulting loss and damage. 

At the signing ceremony in Edinburgh, the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, explained that: “Small Island States’ emission of greenhouse gases is negligible, but they bear the overwhelming burden of its catastrophic effects, including persistent destruction, repeated costs of rebuilding and huge debts to finance resilience.  This injustice must end.    We insist that those States most responsible for this dire situation respect their legal obligations to stop global warming and to provide compensation to its victims.  The time for empty promises is over.”  Prime Minister of Tuvalu, Kausea Natano, stressed that: “For us, climate justice is a matter of survival.  Rising sea levels, extreme weather events, the decline of marine resources – these threaten our very existence.  We see better than anyone else what is being done to our beautiful planet.  It is time to put words into action, to save Small Island States, and to save the world from impending disaster.” 

The legal counsel to the Commission, Professor Payam Akhavan of Massey College, University of Toronto, and Member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague, said that: “Small Island States are the canary in the coalmine of climate catastrophe.  Their fate is a warning to all humankind that the disastrous consequences of global warming are happening now, not in a distant future.  The fundamental principle of international law not to cause harm to others has now taken on an unprecedented dimension.  This historic initiative to pursue climate justice should be welcome by all who care about the future of our planet.” 

For media enquires please contact: COSIS.COP26@gmail.com

Read the Agreement for the establishment of COSIS. (PDF, 3,6 Mo)

LWBC forum

LWBC Annual Forum

By | Funding Opportunities, Student opportunity, Upcoming Events

LWBC forum

CPIJ is proud to partner with Lawyers Without Borders Canada (LWBC) for the 2021 edition of its annual forum titled “Residential Schools: Truth, Justice and Healing – International Exchanges”. The event brings together many important actors in international human rights law and is intended for practitioners and law students.

The two-day Forum is composed of four half-day sessions. Each session addresses a key societal issue: truth-seeking, justice, reparations and guarantees of non-repetition.

Firstly, CPIJ is offering five (5) scholarships to students who wish to attend the Forum. The value is $20. Priority will be given to First Nations students.

Secondly, CPIJ is looking for seven (7) students interested in attending the Forum to take notes during the sessions and write a blog post. The blog post will be published on the Quid Justitiae blog (or a blog of your choice) during a multi-day seminar. Students will receive a $200 scholarship upon publication.

The post must include a detailed summary of the panel covered, the main objective being to bring the content of the Forum into the public domain. However, the student might include a critical commentary and additional content, including multimedia. The post must be between 1,500 and 2,500 words in length and written in English or French.

Students will have ten (10) days to submit their entry. The essay will then be edited. The registration fees of the selected students will be covered by the CJIP.

Apply for any of these scholarships before November 2.

extradition

Changing Canada’s Extradition Laws: The Halifax Colloquium’s Proposals for Law Reform

By | News

The report released in October 2021 states the Canadian process for sending people to face prosecution and incarceration abroad is riddled with shortcomings that make the system inherently unjust.

The recommendations for change come from the Halifax Colloquium on Extradition Law Reform at Dalhousie University in September 2018, which brought together academics, defence counsel and human rights organizations.

Funding for the Halifax Colloquium on Extradition Law Reform was provided by the Canadian Partnership for International Justice (CPIJ). The Colloquium was hosted and hospitality was provided by the MacEachen Institute for Public Policy, Dalhousie University. The Human Rights Research and Education Centre (HRREC) at the University of Ottawa kindly arranged for translation of this document.

This document was prepared by Professor Robert J. Currie of the Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University, and represents the consensus of the participants in the colloquium.

Read the report. (PDF, 300 Ko)

LWBC Annual Forum Application Form

By | Student opportunity

Participation to the LWBC Annual Forum / Participation au Forum annuel ASFC

Fill in the form below to submit your application for a scholarship to attend the 2021 LWBC Forum. Remplissez ce formulaire pour soumettre votre candidature à une bourse de participation pour le Forum 2021 d'ASFC.

Prioirty will be given to members of the First Nations. La priorité sera accordée aux membres des Premières Nations.

Describe the relationship you have or had with a Partnership's team member (professor, supervisor, organizer of an activity I attended, etc.) Décrivez vos liens actuels ou passés avec un membre du Partenariat (professeur.e, superviseur.e, organisateur/trice d'un événement auquel j'ai participé, etc.).

Did you receive funding from the Partnership in the past? If yes, how much and for which purpose? Avez-vous reçu du financement de la part du Partenariat dans le passé ? Si oui, combien et pour quelle activité ?

Are you available to attend the Forum on November 3-4, 2021 on Zoom? Serez-vous disponible pour participer au Forum les 3 et 4 novembre 2021 sur Zoom?

Indicate if you only want to receive a grant covering your registration fees or if you would like to write a blog post and receive additionnal funding. Indiquez si vous souhaitez seulement recevoir une bourse pour couvrir vos frais d'inscription ou si vous souhaitez rédiger un billet de blogue et recevoir du financement additionnel.

What is your fluency in these languages? Quelle est votre maîtrise de ces langues ?

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Upload your application (resume and any other relevant documents). Téléverser votre dossier de candidature (CV et tout autre document pertinent). Maximum size / Taille maximale : 10MB.

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Fannie Lafontaine

Professor Fannie Lafontaine takes honors in Canada’s Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers

By | News

Professor Fannie Lafontaine, a full professor at the Faculty of Law of Université Laval, chair of the Canada Research Chair in International Criminal Justice and Human Rights, Director of the Canadian Partnership for International Justice and Co-Director of the International Criminal and Humanitarian Law Clinic, has been recognized by Canadian Lawyer Magazine in its prestigious annual Canada’s Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers.

Competing in the Government/Non-Profits/Associations category, she was named one of 25 lawyers and judges from across the country who have made a significant contribution to their profession and to Canadian society, a well-deserved honor.

Canadian Lawyer Magazine, which received 22,409 votes this year, reports a praise received on Professor Lafontaine: “Fannie Lafontaine’s analysis of genocide, as well as her impactful reports and interventions, are having huge impacts on the narrative surrounding the First Nations’ human rights violations in Canada”.

In recent years, Fannie Lafontaine has played an unprecedented role as an independent civilian observer of the police investigation into allegations of criminal conduct by police officers against Indigenous people across Quebec. Her expertise brought to light the existence of systemic racism in the police force towards Indigenous peoples in Quebec, contributing to the creation of the Viens Commission of Inquiry. In this role, rendered necessary  by a serious social crisis, she helped develop principles for assessing the integrity and impartiality of police investigations against other police officers, particularly in an Indigenous context.

She was also the lead drafter of the Supplementary Report to the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, “A Legal Analysis on Genocide.” The report sparked a discussion countrywide and received wide international coverage, including at the United Nations and the Organization of American States. The painful discoveries of missing children from former residential schools across Canada further validate the importance and relevant of her analysis .

Fannie Lafontaine’s recent contributions are at the heart of some of the most pressing legal and societal issues in Canada and have influenced how colonial violence and systemic racism against Indigenous peoples can be named, addressed and deconstructed.

Congratulations to Fannie Lafontaine!

Fannie Lafontaine

Intership Opening at ASFC

By | News, Student opportunity

ASFCAvocats sans frontières Canada (ASFC) est à la recherche d’une personne engagée, dynamique et ouverte sur le monde qui veut contribuer à faire de l’accès à la justice un moyen de changement. Le/la stagiaire en droit appuie l’équipe du siège social d’ASFC pour plusieurs aspects juridiques des programmes de coopération internationale et des appels à propositions.

Titre du poste : Stagiaire en droit
Emplacement : Ville de Québec ou télétravail, selon les fonctions occupées
Date limite pour postuler 30 août 2021 à 23h59
Durée : Quatre mois (avec possibilité de prolongation)
Début : Septembre 2021
Conditions de stage : Stage rémunéré – 20 heures par semaine
Nombre de postes : 2

Consultez l’offre de stage pour en savoir plus.