Agnes Callamard Profile picture
Director, Global Freedom of Expression, Columbia University; UN Special Rapporteur on Extra-Judicial Executions. Tweets on human rights
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24 Feb
Many thanks to @CNN for corroborating that the two private jets HZ-SK1 and HZ-SK2 which brought the Saudi killing team to Istanbul are owned by the Saudi Crown and MBS.…
According to CNN, Ownership of Sky Prime Aviation was illegally transferred in December 2017 to a Public investment Fund controlled by the Prince. I had alleged in my June 2019 investigation that they were part of State resources allocated to #JamalKhashoggi killing.
The @CNN investigation provides thus further evidence that : 1. The killing of Jamal Khashoggi was resourced and carried out through the use of State resources; and 2. #MBS is further directly linked to the implementation of the execution.
Read 4 tweets
24 Feb
Mon rapport sur l'attaque du vol Ukrainien par les gardiens de la revolution Iranienne est public (en Anglais:… et Farsi:… L'Iran a commis de multiples violations des droits humains en abattant le vol PS752 le 8 janvier 2020
Dans les situations de haute tension militaire, le moyen le plus efficace pour empêcher les attaques contre l'aviation civile est de fermer l'espace aérien. Si l'Iran avait fermé son espace aérien au trafic civil ce soir-là, 176 vies auraient été épargnées
Selon l'enquête iranienne, le vol PS752 a été ciblé intentionnellement mais par erreur par le personnel militaire des Grdiens de la Revolution. Mais ces explications sont incoherentes et contradictoires, conçues pour créer un maximum de confusion et un minimum de clarté.
Read 7 tweets
23 Feb
The results of my investigation into #Iran strike of #PS752 are made public today. I found multiple human rights violations, including of the right to life of the 176 people on board. The press release is here:… (Photo: Aljazeera)
In situations of high military tension the most effective means to prevent attacks on civil aviation is to close the airspace. Had Iran, knowing full well that hostilities with the US could escalate, closed its airspace for civilian traffic, 176 lives would have been spared
The explanations provided by the Iranian authorities as to how the IRGC TOR Unit struck the civilian flight present many inconsistencies. Simply put, they do not add up. My letter to Iran details a large number of contradictions with the explanations:…
Read 7 tweets
3 Jan
One year ago, the US targeted killing of #Iran’s #GeneralSoleimani in #Iraq became the first known incident outside the context of a declared conflict in which a State invoked self-defence as justification for an attack against a State-actor.
The international community feared its aftermath would see military escalation with devastating consequences. However, while the worst in terms of a global conflict was avoided, worse struck nevertheless.…
On 8 January,176 innocent people subsequently lost their lives when their flight, PS 752, was struck down by Iranian missiles. A month later, Iranians were killed, and hundreds arrested, as they demonstrated for accountability and truth from the Iranian leadership for this attack
Read 12 tweets
17 Sep 20
چرا بسیاری از اعدام‌ها و احتمالاً اکثر آنها، به اعدام‌های خودسرانه تبدیل می‌شود؟
حقوق بین الملل محدودیت‌های بسیار جدی‌ای بر مجازات اعدام اعمال می‌کند و تضمین‌های قانونی اکید و بی چون وچرایی نیز در مراحل مختلف دادرسی و صدور حکم، الزام می‌دارد./1
عدم رعایت این محدودیت‌ها و تضمین‌ها به سلب خودسرانه و در نتیجه غیرقانونیِ حیات از فرد منتج می‌گرد.
اعمال مجازات اعدام به گونه‌ای که مفاد دیگری از میثاق بین المللی حقوق مدنی و سیاسی را نقض کند (حق بر دادرسی عادلانه، ممنوعیت شکنجه، ممنوعیت اعمال تبعیض و غیره)،/2
به خودی خود، موجب می‌شود اعدام مورد نظر خودسرانه تلقی گردد.
به موجب حقوق بین الملل، مجازات اعدام به صِرف این که پس از طی مراحل قانونی اعمال می‌شود، قانونی نیست.
تنها رعایِت تضمین‌های دقیق، سختگیرانه و انعطاف ناپذیرِ تشریفات قانونی است که/3
Read 10 tweets
16 Sep 20
Why are many, if not the majority, of #deathpenalty cases amounting to arbitrary executions, whether carried out in #Iran, #SaudiArabia the #UnitedStates or elsewhere? This is a long thread providing some explanations.
International law imposes severe restrictions on the use of death penalty and demands strict safeguards. Non-compliance with these restrictions and safeguards leads to arbitrary and thus unlawful deprivation of life.
The imposition of #deathpenalty in a manner that is contrary to the International Covenant on Civil or Political Rights (e.g. fair trial, prohibition against torture, prohibition against discrimination, etc.) would automatically translate into the execution being deemed arbitrary
Read 12 tweets
25 Aug 20
Long thread on the human rights situation in the #Philippines. My heart cries out for #ZaraAlvarez, for her family, her friends, her colleagues, the people she served. WHAT WILL IT TAKE FOR THESE KILLINGS TO STOP? HOW MUCH MORE SORROW, GRIEF, PAIN CAN THE PEOPLE ENDURE?
The war on drugs is in fact a war on the poor and it also turns out to be a war on dissent. The poison unleashed 4 years ago has spread, devouring more people and more regions, urban and rural areas, city dwellers and poor farmers alike.
One year ago, 11 @UN_SPExperts called on the Human Rights Council to establish an independent investigation into human rights violations in the Philippines. Last June, there were 33 of us, calling yet again for an international investigation into human rights in the #Philippines
Read 13 tweets
19 Aug 20
Today 45 migrants and refugees died off Libyan coast; one 16 year old Sudanese boy died off the French coast. These are all unlawful deaths, which engage the responsibility of European and British Governments to respect or protect the right to life. WHY?…
First, to avoid migration across their borders, the EU/UK rely on the policy of extraterritoriality to stop migrants before they reach their territory. Such policies include assisting, funding or training Libyan agencies to arrest, detain, rescue or disembark refugees/migrants
There is plenty of evidence proving that Libyan authorities and armed groups are responsible for serious human rights violations, including violations of the right to life., of migrants.
Read 14 tweets
8 Jul 20
My latest report to the UN #HRC44 focus on targeted killings by armed drones:… The world has entered a “second drone age”, in which State and non-State actors are deploying ever more advanced drone technologies, a major international, security issue.
As of 2020, at least 102 countries have acquired an active military drone inventory, and 20 armed non-State actors reportedly have obtained armed and unarmed drone systems. This expanding use of drones is accompanied by an increasing disregard of central int'l law principles.
To justify extraterritorial drones use of force, some States have reinterpreted the law of self-defence by distorting the notion of “imminent” attacks and the principle of State sovereignty. Low-intensity conflicts are drawn-out with few if any geographical or temporal boundaries
Read 7 tweets
31 May 20
Police Use of force should be guided by the principles of legality, necessity, proportion, precaution and non-discrimination. These are fundamental principles of international human rights law that should bind all states. But they are not the norms in the #USA. #ICantBreath
The use of lethal force in the US is heavily decentralised. There is no federal law. It is regulated at State and municipal level and does not meet international standards which require that lethal force be the exception and only when strictly necessary to protect life.
In the US police can use lethal force where it is ‘reasonable’ on the basis of the severity of the crime at issue, if there is an immediate threat to the safety of officers or others, if he/she is resisting arrest, if there is probable cause of serious physical harm.
Read 7 tweets
3 Jan 20
#Pentagon statement on targeted killing of #suleimani: 1. It mentions that it aimed at “deterring future Iranian attack plans”. This however is very vague. Future is not the same as imminent which is the time based test required under international law. (1)
2. Overall, the statement places far greater emphasis on past activities and violations allegedly commuted by Suleimani. As such the killing appears far more retaliatory for past acts than anticipatory for imminent self defense.
3. The notion that Suleimani was “actively developing plans” is curious both from a semantic and military standpoint. Is it sufficient to meet the test of mecessity and proportionality?
Read 4 tweets
3 Jan 20
#Iraq: The targeted killings of Qasem Soleiman and Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis are most lokely unlawful and violate international human rights law: Outside the context of active hostilities, the use of drones or other means for targeted killing is almost never likely to be legal (1)
To be justified under international human rights law, intentionally lethal or potentially lethal force can only be used where strictly necessary to protect against an imminent threat to life. (2)
In other words, whoever targeted these two men would need to demonstrate that the persons targeted constitute(d) an imminent threat to others. An individual’s past involvement in “terrorist” attacks is not sufficient to make his targeting for killing lawful. (3)
Read 6 tweets
23 Dec 19
Why the sentence today is anything BUT Justice for #JamalKhashoggi: a) the hearings were held behind closed door even though none of the justification for holding a trial in camera under international law applied to this particular trial
b) The 18 Saudi officials, present on their own in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul for more than 10 days, cleaned up the crime scene. This is obstruction of justice and a violation of the Minnesota Protocol for the investigation of arbitrary killings (2)
c) Under international human rights law, the killing of Mr. #Khashoggi was an extrajudicial execution for which the State of #SaudiArabia is responsible. But at no point did the trial considered the responsibilities of the State.
Read 11 tweets