[hr-education] HRE and international courts

Received by e-mail:
From: Andrew Tarsy
Date: 11/08/2009

Dear colleagues,

International courts have become huge drivers of activity in the human rights field, from Sierra Leone and the former Yugoslavia to Rwanda, Cambodia, Lebanon and even the International Criminal Court (ICC). The courts generate a great deal of interest among constituencies directly affected and sometimes far beyond. Some have embraced a wider role in the human rights conversation, entering partnerships with human rights education projects or related educational initiatives. Others have had leaders who allude publicly to the urgency of education as prevention even though it is outside their mandate and their expertise. 

Should the education sector expect courts to play a role in the education field? To what extent should the content of HRE curriculum include the stories of the courts and cases? Are there any dangers to the integrity of the educational process when cooperating with the courts themselves, which have their own agendas and political realities? Can HRE be critical of the courts or some of their choices and with what consequences? Finally, what aspects of education can be tied authentically to a true crime prevention strategy such that courts could claim them as such? Is there adequate research in the field on this last point and if not, would it be valuable?

Best, Andrew Tarsy, United States.

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