IBAHRI calls on President Trump to re-evaluate administration’s stance on human rights

IBAHRIFriday 6 October 2017

In an open letter to President Donald Trump, signed by Baroness Helena Kennedy and Ambassador (ret) Hans Corell – former United Nations Legal Counsel and Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs – the Co-Chairs of the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI) call on President Trump to ‘re-evaluate [his] administration’s stance towards human rights, the judicial system and the rule of law’, and to openly commit to these principles at home and abroad.

Download the open letter here: bit.ly/2y4DL4f

The open letter is critical of actions, which the IBAHRI feels are ‘diametrically opposed to the defence of human rights’. One area of particular concern referenced in the letter is President Trump’s ‘belligerent response to the risk of nuclear conflict with North Korea’. In this respect IBAHRI recommends that the United States ‘should instead exercise thoughtful world leadership in seeking peace through means short of force, and continue to exercise restraint and observe the United Nations Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons to avert a crisis where there will be no winners.’

Other key concerns addressed in the letter include:

  • A growing trend of discrimination within the United States;
  • Growing incidences of hate speech and hate crimes;
  • The Executive’s increasing attacks on journalists;
  • The administration’s disrespect for the principle of judicial independence and the rule of law;
  • The use of armed drones;
  • Reduced funding of the United Nations;
  • Withdrawal from the Paris Agreement; and the
  • Condoning of torture.



Notes to the Editor

  • The letter refers to a previous open letter sent from IBAHRI to President Trump to mark Human Rights Day on 10 December 2016, following his election.
  • The International Bar Association (IBA), established in 1947, is the world’s leading organisation of international legal practitioners, bar associations and law societies. The International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI), an autonomous and financially independent entity, works to promote, protect and enforce human rights under a just rule of law, and to preserve the independence of the judiciary and the legal profession worldwide.


For further information please contact:

Romana St. Matthew - Daniel
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