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Promoting dialogue between human rights researchers, practitioners and policy-makers from around the world.

Original contributions on recent human rights law developments across the globe, including case law, current litigation, legislation, policy-making and activism are welcome.

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The Prohibition of Torture 70 years after the UDHR

Natasa Mavronicola 16th October 2018

Article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which is 70 this December, provides in unequivocal terms that ‘No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment’. There is a duality to the shall: it carries the stipulation, but also the hope, that no one shall again […]

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Justice Kennedy on Healthcare

Jennifer Oliva 15th October 2018

Justice Anthony Kennedy, who long served as the swing vote on important healthcare-related decisions, retired from the United States Supreme Court on July 31, 2018. The press and pundits alike reacted to Kennedy’s retirement announcement with dire forecasts that the Court’s healthcare jurisprudence would veer to the right. In fact, Justice Kennedy’s record of healthcare […]

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The Consequences of the Ashers Cake Judgment

Daphne Romney QC 12th October 2018

The Supreme Court has allowed the appeal by Belfast bakery Ashers Bakery and its managers Mr and Mrs McArthur in refusing to bake a cake for Gareth Lee, who had asked for it to be iced with the message Support Gay Marriage. The Supreme Court found that Mr Lee had not been discriminated against on […]

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Indian Supreme Court Strikes Down Ban on Women’s Entry into Religious Temple

Raja Dandamudi 11th October 2018

Recently, a (4:1) majority of a five-judge bench of the Indian Supreme Court in Indian Lawyers Association v. State of Kerala upheld the right of women to worship in the famous Sabarimala temple, irrespective of their age. This judgement struck down a rule which banned the entry of women between the ages 10 to 50 years into the temple. The judgment has thereby sounded the death […]

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Religious symbols in schools: Passive and harmless or a powerful threat?

Olivia Rani Bessant 9th October 2018

In Lautsi v Italy (2012), the applicant argued that the presence of crucifixes in state school classrooms violated students’ Article 9 ECHR right to religious freedom, but the ECtHR deemed the cross a ‘passive symbol’ and Article 9 respected. Yet in Dahlab v Switzerland (2001),an earlier case the applicant cited, banning a teacher from wearing her hijab […]

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