human rights news & views

Three more Bosnian Serbs arrested for crimes against humanity

Three Bosnian Serbs were arrested last week accused of crimes against humanity committed in 1992.  Veljko Basic, 82, Predrag Bastah, 55, and Goran Viskovic, 54, are being questioned by Bosnian authorities regarding crimes committed in Susica camp in the town of Vlasenica in northeastern Bosnia. Some 8,000 local civilians, mostly Muslims, were held in the […]

Vale Richard Rorty

US philosopher and mensch Richard Rorty died this month, aged 75. He observed that "philosophy occupies an important place in culture only when things seem to be falling apart." A reluctant pragmatist, Emeritus Professor Rorty saw a path to realising human rights by appealling to hearts rather than minds: ‘If, like many of us, you […]

Women’s rights key to saving baby girls

There are the moral and legal arguments in favour of human rights, which ought to be enough, but, let’s face it, sometimes it helps to come up with self-interested reasons for abusers to cease and desist and for governments to protect and promote. And in this geo-political clime, ‘national security’ is leverage par excellence. Here’s […]

Law enforcement to combat enforced disappearances

Vying for the honour of the first human rights treaty of the 21st century is the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance. After 25 years of work, the text of the draft convention has been passed by the UN Human Rights Council and now awaits adoption at the General Assembly […]

Bosnian Serbs face trial for Srebrenica genocide

Eleven years after Europe’s largest mass murder since World War Two, there is the prospect of justice for the victims and survivors of the massacre of over 8,000 Bosnian Muslims in the UN ‘safe haven’ in Srebrenica. The trial of seven former Bosnian Serb officers began last month at the International Criminal Tribunal for the […]