, 17 tweets, 14 min read Read on Twitter
Delighted to be in New York for the launch of #Trialwatch with brilliant @BarHumanRights colleagues @stephencragg1 & @SamuelZimran. BHRC conducts independent trial monitoring across many countries & we value the spotlight brought by trial observations.

Do say hi if you are here!
After a touch of stardust, the #Trialwatch panel has kicked off with a heavyweight #JournalismShouldNotBeACrime panel @MFFahmy11 @cdeloire @jrezaian @JameelJaffer @mariaressa chaired by Helena Kennedy QC. Chilling to hear experiences of journalists imprisoned. Why are they there?
As @MFFahmy11 talks about watching the world from the cage in the Egyptian courtroom, wondering whether the world is watching, a reminder why trial monitoring is so important. @BarHumanRights has monitored trials in Egypt and has raised concerns too on #fairtrials #cages.
Listening to @jrezaian on his experiences in Iran, he tips lawyers on defending someone in a court called “revolutionary” stg...

Brings to mind the grave difficulties still experienced by many in Iran. Thinking of #FreeNazanin & Nasrin Sotoudeh barhumanrights.org.uk/uk-barristers-…
As @mariaressa insists she will go back to the Philippines, despite the danger, she talks about women being attacked more than men, & the power for evil in social media - as many as 90 hate messages per hour & then from the President’s own mouth.

“I refuse to be silenced”.
An All-Star Panel at Clooney Foundation #TrialWatch launch. #JournalismShouldNotBeACrime #fairtrials
@MFFahmy11 @mariaressa @jrezaian @JameelJaffer @cdeloire and Helena Kennedy QC. Discussing why the situation seems to be deteriorating for journalists.
As talk turns to Khashoggi, & Trump’s effective exoneration of MBS/Saudi Arabia on the basis that it just wasn’t that important, and of Trump’s own failure to defend press freedom, I’m reminded of the spectacle of Britain inviting Trump to a State visit. How far we have fallen.
What can be done to prevent courts being used to undermine rule of law?
Another terrific panel at #TrialWatch - Beatrice Mtetwa (lawyer, Zimbabwe), Mohammed Nashid (former Maldives President) Judge Gloria Porras (Constitutional Ct, Guatemala) Geoffrey Robertson QC, @JagoRussell.
As former President of the Maldives, Mohammed Nasheed, discusses the kangaroo courts and his prosecution at #TrialWatch, worth recalling the @BarHumanRights trial observation of his case which raised some very serious concerns about #fairtrial.

“We need the eyes of the world watching our courts.”

Striking, frightening words from Judge Gloria Porras on the state of the rule of law in Guatemalan courts, & international silence despite the complexity & seriousness of the failings. #TrialWatch
Brilliant words from brilliant human rights lawyer, Beatrice Mtetwa, on the need to commend the bravery of judges who seek to protect the rule of law, despite corruption in courts. Important point that a fair trial doesn’t make headlines and judges’ bravery not often recognised.
Good to hear Geoffrey Robertson QC talk about Lula’s case in Brazil. There was a clear need for trial monitoring in that case & no political will.

Lawyers like #TrialWatch @BarHumanRights @ABAesq are able to provide specialist trial monitors who are politically neutral. Ask us!
As George Clooney highlights global abuses of human rights, a few British lawyers in the audience definitely picked out his reference to “enemies of the people”. Yes, the #ruleoflaw matters in every country.
Here’s a quick glance at you, Brexit Britain.
Could technology make a difference?

As Amal and George Clooney formally launch #TrialWatch, Brad Smith, @Microsoft President, talks about the transformative power of AI to assist with trial monitoring - a new app for both lawyers & non-lawyers to shine a light on #unfairtrials.
The final panel discussion of #Trialwatch launch @ColombiaLaw with former UN High Commissioner @raad_zeid, @NickKristof @Microsoft & others. Last words to Amal Clooney: “Sunlight is the best disinfectant...we will start to change it, one case at a time.” #fairtrials #humanrights
To real applause, former UN High Commissioner @raad_zeid starts by noting there was a gender imbalance on the panel and so he would now like to declare himself a non-male.
To real applause again, former UN High Commissioner @raad_zeid is scathing about silence on abuse of human rights by the highest levels of government and even at the UN.
“We live in a world with a cacophony of sound... which screens us (from their silence).”
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