human rights news & views

Navi Pillay on traditional values and human rights

An edited speech given in Geneva on 4 October 2010 by Navanethem Pillay (right), the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: "[T]here is no need to choose between the twin imperatives of being culturally sensitive on the one hand, and respectful of human rights on the other . . . I stand before you a […]

Calls to boycott this other apartheid

When people like Desmond Tutu describe the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories as apartheid, it's not mere hyperbole. Israel's self-proclaimed 'policy of separation' seeks to segregate Palestinians and Jews in the West Bank, writes Israeli human rights lawyer Michael Sfard. Apartheid is an Afrikaans word meaning literally, separateness.  It's hard to see how Israel's policy […]

Vatican calls for worldwide repeal of ‘sodomy laws’

Last week 66 nations at the UN General Assembly adopted a landmark statement affirming the equal rights of all persons, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.  It was the first time the UN body has formally dealt with the rights of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people. In debate prior to the vote, […]

Vale Peter McGregor

Peter McGregor, Australian pacifist and ‘education radical activist’ for over 40 years, died yesterday. An academic by trade, McGregor was also a convener of the Australian Anti-Apartheid Movement along with Meredith Burgmann.  Last year he attempted to arrest senior members of the Australian government on suspicion of war crimes. According to Queensland anti-war activist Ciaron […]