IDEAS From The CBC

Wednesday, September 25 at 2:00 pm

'Hope is not what we need': UN Rapporteur urges governments to fight for human rights

Human rights lawyer Agnès Callamard calls the killing of Jamal Khashoggi "a crime of our time."

Callamard, the UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial executions, was responsible for the investigation into Khashoggi's murder. Her report concluded that officials of the state of Saudi Arabia were responsible. She says the journalist's brutal death demonstrates the urgent need to stand up for human rights.

"It is a crime of our time, first because of targeted killings or violence against individuals whose freedom of opinion, independence of mind is challenging some form of power that is very much a reflection — an increasing reflection — of the days we live in," Callamard told IDEAS host Nahlah Ayed.

"And in my opinion, it is becoming closer to a Cold War era than what we have experienced for the last 20 years."

Callamard says she's deeply disappointed in the international community for not confronting the brutality taking place in Saudi Arabia. She argues this lack of action by democratic governments sets a dangerous precedent.

"It's sending a message to torturers, to killers, to abusers, around the world that as long as they do it and violate human rights, no one is really going to stand against them."

Callamard spoke to IDEAS host Nahlah Ayed about human rights in the 21st century, and what the international community can do when they're violated. 

To listen to the audio of “'Hope is not what we need': UN Rapporteur urges governments to fight for human rights” on IDEAS From The CBC online, please click HERE.