GJC in the News

Pompeo says China's policies on Muslims amount to 'genocide'

Excerpt of Associated Press article that quotes GJC Legal Director Grant Shubin.

Human rights groups, which have been generally critical of Trump administration policies, welcomed the move, which Pompeo said was taken with an eye toward the U.S. role in prosecuting Nazi war crimes during WWII at the Nuremberg trials.

“We hope to see the U.S. follow these strong words with decisive action,” said Grant Shubin of the Global Justice Center. “Where there is a risk of genocide, there is a duty to act. Moving forward, this designation should inform the entirety of U.S. foreign policy and we hope to hear more from the incoming Biden administration on how it plans to follow through on this historic announcement.”

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Pompeo labels China's treatment of Uighurs 'genocide'

Excerpt of The Hill article that quotes GJC Legal Director Grant Shubin.

The Global Justice Center, an international human rights and humanitarian law organization, said the U.S. is right to label atrocities in Xianjing as genocide, but raised concerns that Pompeo’s move is weakened by political considerations.

“The United States is right to bring the brutal, years-long repression of the Uighurs within the framework of genocide. What’s more, it correctly cited gendered crimes of biological destruction like forced sterilization and birth control. However, the human rights community should be alarmed at reports that this decision was motivated by policy goals instead of a legal obligation to prevent and punish genocide,” Grant Shubin, legal director of the Global Justice Center, said in a statement.

“Our legal and moral duty to combat genocide should inform our policy goals, not the other way around. The US should be applauded for taking action to prevent the destruction of the Uighurs and we hope other nations join them. But we must see fighting genocide as a cause for humanity rather than a geopolitical wedge," Shubin continued.

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Rescinding the Global Gag Rule Isn’t Enough

Excerpt of Foreign Policy op-ed by GJC President Akila Radhakrishnan and CHANGE President Serra Sippel.

Over the past four years, outgoing U.S. President Donald Trump has abandoned even the pretense of a foreign policy grounded in respect for women’s rights and reproductive rights. Perhaps the clearest example was Trump’s unprecedented expansion of the global gag rule, or the Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance policy (formerly known as the Mexico City policy). The global gag rule blocks U.S. funding for foreign organizations that provide any services, referrals, or even information for legal abortions, or that advocate for changes to abortion laws in their country. First implemented by the Reagan administration in 1984, the policy has been enforced during all subsequent Republican administrations. Before Trump reinstated it, it applied only to family planning funding. But since 2017, it has been extended to all global health funding.

Today, the gag rule places restrictions on $8 billion of U.S. global health funding, and it’s had grave consequences for women worldwide: As a direct result of the policy’s design to cut funding to healthcare providers, it has led to more maternal deaths and unsafe abortions, a rise in HIV and AIDS, and the breakdown of civil society coalitions and partnerships, such as Marie Stopes International.

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The Great Regression

Excerpt of International Bar Association article that quotes GJC President Akila Radhakrishnan.

Further, President Trump was successful in securing a 6-3 conservative majority on the Supreme Court for decades to come by appointing Justice Amy Coney Barrett after the death of the Court’s stalwart defender of women’s rights, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Akila Radhakrishnan, President of the Global Justice Center, is concerned that such a politically biased Supreme Court could spell disaster for many rights that were already on tenterhooks. ‘The Supreme Court doesn’t look like it’s going to stand up for women’s rights anymore. And that’s terrifying,’ she says.

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It’s Time We Talk About Gender-Based Violence Against Hong Kong Protestors

Excerpt of Women's Media Center op-ed by GJC intern Hannah Kohn .

Since February 2019, the mass demonstrations roiling Hong Kong have been consistently met with police brutality. But sexual and gender-based violence has flown under the radar in most mainstream coverage of the protests. It is time for the international community to heed the call of Hong Kong-based activists and hold the government to account for this human rights crisis.

The unrest began when Hong Kong’s government proposed legislation that would allow extraditions to mainland China, which critics argue would allow for anyone in the city to be picked up and detained — including political activists — and essentially erode Hong Kong’s independence from the mainland.

Shortly thereafter, hundreds of thousands of Hong Kong citizens (in some cases almost 2 million) took to the streets to protest. The government responded to these largely peaceful protests with widespread, severe police brutality. As a consequence of the government’s disproportionate response, the protests blossomed from the narrow goal of opposing the extradition bill into much wider demandsfor police accountability and democracy.

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