Reparations for Historical Wrongs

Date: Thursday 14 April 2016

Time: 18:00 - 19:30

Location: Sophialaan 10, 2514 JR The Hague

Venue: The Hague Institute for Global Justice

Speakers:

CPD: 1.5

Fee: Free

Doughty Street International and The Hague Institute For Global Justice are delighted to invite you to a panel discussion on Reparations for Historical Wrongs. The event will take place on Thursday 14th April 2016 at The Hague Institute for Global Justice, Sophialaan 10 The Hague.

We aim to start at 6pm, with the talks lasting until 7.30pm. The event will be followed by some drinks, food, and an opportunity to network with colleagues from other institutes.

To reserve your place, RSVP to events@doughtystreet.co.uk

Reparations for Historical Wrongs

The issue of reparations for historical wrongs and mass crimes is an issue of contemporary importance. One need only look at reparation claims made and awarded in the past year, including Namibia’s quest for reparations by Germany in relation to genocide committed against the Herero and Nama tribes at the beginning of 1900; the award of over $1m in relation to victims of sexual slavery during the war in Guatemala, Greek claims at the beginning of 2015 for reparations of Germany in relation to Nazi crimes; and the ongoing debates about reparations for slavery, to appreciate the significance of the issue.

No general scheme exists for victims of historical mass crimes. This raises important questions, such as what grounds exist in international law and what current legal mechanisms apply? Is there a right to reparations? Who can make these claims and against which actors, especially when the crimes were committed so long ago that neither victims nor perpetrators are still alive. What are the difficulties with reparations for historic and/or mass crimes and what are the alternatives? When financial compensation is requested in relation to mass crimes, how should this be divided and where would the money come from?

This panel discussion will focus on these and other questions and will touch upon concrete situations and examples.

Our panellists include:  

  • Lord Anthony Gifford QC, a human rights lawyer working in Jamaica and the UK, Associate Tenant at Doughty Street International, and a member of the Jamaican National Committee on Reparations, will speak about reparations for slavery within the context of international law principles, and examining the legal bases.
  • Ms Fernne Brennan, senior lecturer at Essex University, will discuss the various elements of colonialism and slave trade reparations, and whether reparations for slavery are ever justified.
  • Professor Liesbeth Zegveld, lawyer at Prakken d’Oliveira and Professor of War Reparations at the University of Amsterdam, will address the issue of securing legal redress for war victims.
  • Judge Ann Power-Forde, Judge at the ECtHR from 2008-2014, and Associate Tenant at Doughty Street International, will speak about reparations for historical wrongs under the Convention and from her perspective as a former ECtHR judge. 

The discussion will be moderated by Mr Stephen J. Rapp, former US Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues and currently a Distinguished Fellow at The Hague Institute for Global Justice.

Date & Time: Thursday 14 April (6pm-7.30pm)

Venue: The Hague Institute for Global Justice, Sophialaan 10, 2514 JR The Hague

Registration: RSVP to events@doughtystreet.co.uk

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