Leila Abdelrazaq artwork
Leila Abdelrazaq artwork
Leila Abdelrazaq artwork
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Human Rights

The inherent dignity and the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world. Preamble, The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948.

What Does It Take to Have an Open and Honest Conversation About Torture?

By Shayna Plaut, Contributing Editor, Human Rights

Peter W. Klein is the director of the Global Reporting Centre. He has won three Emmys and has been a journalist for over 25 years. He cut his teeth covering the war in Bosnia for NPR and then began to work for ABC Evening News and “60 Minutes.” He continues to be producer for “60 Minutes” and he also produces stories for The New York Times Retro Report. His parents were Holocaust survivors from Hungary, and he is the father of four children.

Klein is the current head of the UBC Graduate School of Journalism where I taught a course on the Ethics, Tactics and Tensions of Human Rights Reporting. We have known each other for over five years. In light of the recent release of the Senate Intelligence Committee Report on the CIA role in torture (“The Torture Report”) and International Human Rights Day, I asked Klein about his experience as a journalist covering torture – importantly what can be gained from interviewing torturers. As with any good journalism, there were more than two sides to the story.

On a rainy November evening I sat down with Klein to discuss his understanding of the role of journalism and the journalists in covering terrorism: what are the ethics and the responsibilities of interviewing a torturer?  (more…)

Lampedusa boat tragedy: a survivor’s story

Repost from the Guardian. Last October a boat went down off the Italian island of Lampedusa, killing 366 migrants on board. What happened next? This is the story of Fanus, a survivor and one of thousands of people who flee Eritrea every year … Continue reading

A Heathen Learning

By Dr. Adriana Garriga-López * These remarks were delivered at the Kalamazoo College 2014 Baccalaureate Service earlier this June. I’ve been asked to meditate on the theme of light for this event, and as I discussed this invitation with my … Continue reading

In search of the activist academic

By Shayna Plaut, Contributing Editor, Human Rights When people ask me “what do you do?” meaning “what do you do for a living?” I find I have two options for how to respond. One is to look proudly in their … Continue reading

The Starting Point Of Death and Justice

By Shayna Plaut, Contributing Editor, Human Rights It was Wednesday night. My friend Malin, who is from Sweden, temporarily living in Edmonton and en route to Taiwan, was staying at my house for a few days in Vancouver. We are … Continue reading

Freedom through Exile: The Unfolding Stories of Cambodian Son

By Shayna Plaut, Contributing Editor, Human Rights Three years after a meeting in the bustling streets of Phnom Phen when the co-founders of Studio Revolt, Masahiro Sugano and Anida Yoeu Ali, first “experienced” Kosal Khiev’s poetry, a documentary about his … Continue reading

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