Sunday, July 25, 2010

Prof Francis Boyle – Aparthied-type policies are Crimes Against Humanity

Prof Francis Boyle – Aparthied-type policies are Crimes Against Humanity
Professor Francis A. Boyle, an expert in international law at the University of Illinois College of Law, said at a convention in Connecticut that Sri Lanka is a violator of the Apartheid Convention, and that the world should, without delay, intensify a ‘divestment and disinvestment campaign’ against Sri Lanka in the same lines and for the same reason the world did this against the criminal apartheid regime in South Africa."

Article I of the Apartheid Convention, more formally known as the International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid (ICSPCA), labels the crime of Apartheid as a "crime against humanity," and declares that "inhuman acts resulting from the policies and practices of racial segregation and discrimination are crimes violating the principles or international law…"

Prof. Boyle said the long history of discriminatory policies instituted by successive governments including desecration of cemeteries and cultural symbols overwhelmingly qualify as an apartheid regime, and therefore should be prosecuted as a violator of the Apartheid Convention.

Denying to a group basic human rights and freedom, the right to freedom of opinion and expression also qualifies.

Prof. Boyle pointed out that there is some degree of overlap between Apartheid treaty and the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC). He added that while some nations avoided becoming signatory to the Rome Statute, the crimes against humanity fall into the category of peremptory norms, and the international laws are binding on Governments even when the countries are not signatories to the conventions.

Earlier on another issue of deportations, he said that, "deportation without any reason is illegal, when refugees without visa were not deported."

Rome Statute

Text of Aparthied Convention