UKLFI Charitable Trust organised a webinar on UN Human Rights Systems and How to Engage with Them with Professor Rosa Freedman and chaired by Dr Efrat Sopher. It took place on Sunday 20 March 2022.
In 2019 the first ever UN human rights report on antisemitism was published. This pivotal event took place more than seven decades after the Universal Declaration on Human Rights was created. That Declaration was a direct response to the horrors perpetrated by Nazi Germany; yet Jewish communities since 1948 have not engaged with the UN human rights bodies and have viewed it with scepticism and suspicion. This seminar will focus on the UN human rights system, explaining what it does and how the mechanisms can be used to counter antisemitism. It will confront the reality that excessive scrutiny of Israel within the system has at times been antisemitic, why this has occurred, and how it can and must be challenged and countered.
More about the speakers:
Prof. Rosa Freedman is the inaugural Professor of Law, Conflict and Global Development at the University of Reading. She received her LLB, LLM and PhD from the University of London, and is a non-practising barrister and member of the Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn. Freedman’s research focuses on the UN and human rights.
She has published extensively on UN human rights bodies and systems, on minority rights, and on UN peacekeeping and accountability for human rights abuses committed during such operations. Freedman is a member of the UN Secretary-General’s Civil Society Advisory Board on prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse, is a Specialist Adviser on safeguarding to the UK government International Development Committee, and sits on the UK FCO Women, Peace and Security Steering Group.
Dr. Efrat Sopher chairs the Board of Advisors at the Ezri Center for Iran and Gulf States Research at the University of Haifa. She also advises governments and organisations on foreign policy in the Middle East.
She received a BA in international relations from the University of Southern California and an MSc, MPhil and PhD from the London School of Economics, specialising in Israeli foreign policy towards Iran. She has also qualified and practised as a solicitor in London. Efrat is an active member of the World Jewish Congress Jewish Diplomatic Corps, a Deputy at the Board Deputies of British Jews, a Vice Chair of the Board of the S&P Sephardi Community, and a Director of UK Lawyers for Israel.