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Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister announces support to JRR as part of measures to counter ISIL’s brutal acts of sexual violence

7/10/2014

October 6, 2014 – Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird announced in the House of Commons today that Canada will undertake renewed action, in coordination with our allies and partners, to respond to the heinous acts of sexual violence and other human rights abuses being committed by ISIL, the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, against women and children.

 

“ISIL, a self-proclaimed terrorist caliphate, poses a major threat not only to the region, but also to us here in Canada,” said Baird. “Canada will not stand by as ISIL commits unspeakable atrocities and crimes against humanity, including the kidnapping, torture and rape of women and children. The systematic use of sexual violence as a weapon of war demands an effective and timely response, which is why we are announcing today a number of additional measures that Canada will take to support the innocent victims of ISIL’s brutality and depravity.”

 

The measures announced today include:

  • A contribution of up to $5 million to Justice Rapid Response and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to help respond to and investigate sexual violence and other serious human rights abuses.
  • A $5-million contribution for the prevention of and response to sexual violence and related abuses, including increased access to services and treatment for Syrian and Iraqi refugees and displaced persons who have been victims of violence in ISIL-affected areas.
  • Participation in a joint Canada-U.K. assessment mission in Iraq to identify initiatives that will help assist victims of ISIL’s crimes.
  • Canada will support the deployment of a specialized expert on sexual violence to the Human Rights Council’s Fact-Finding Mission on Iraq.

 

Canada will also continue to provide leadership on the issue of sexual violence as a weapon of war by ensuring that the plight of victims and survivors of ISIL’s sexual violence, including crimes against religious minorities, remains at the top of the global agenda.

 

To view the full press release, click on the following link: http://www.international.gc.ca/media/aff/news-communiques/2014/10/06a.aspx

Article on JRR in Perreault Magazine

3/10/2014

“It is unacceptable that while we demand prompt, professional investigations of crimes in our neighbourhoods, we have to accept a much lower standard for the worst crimes known to humanity.  Justice Rapid Response exists because the investigation of crimes like genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity have to be done right in order to get justice for victims and deter future offenders.”

 

JRR’s Executive Director, Andras Vamos-Goldman, is Perreault Magazine’s “Man with a Cause” for their October issue.

 

Please go to: https://www.perreault-mag.com/  to access the article – subscription is free.

 

 

PERREAULT Article October 2014

 

 

Official Opening – International Criminal Investigations Training Course -15 September 2014 – Washington, D.C.

1/10/2014

The 26th Justice Rapid Response (JRR) training course on international criminal investigations was officially opened on 15 September 2014. The training is being held at the United States Department of State in Washington, D.C. until 19 September 2014. The course is taking place in collaboration with JRR’s long-standing exclusive training partner, the Institute for International Criminal Investigations (IICI), at the invitation and with the support of the State Department’s Office of Global Criminal Justice.   

 

The training course was officially opened by the U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues and Head of the State Department’s Office of Global Criminal Justice, H.E. Stephen Rapp, a long-time supporter of the work of JRR in the pursuit of accountability for mass atrocities through swift, impartial and well conducted investigations. Participants were welcomed by Andras Vamos-Goldman, JRR’s Executive Director, and Gabriel Oosthuizen, IICI Programme Director.    

 

The course is a collaborative project between JRR, the Department of State and IICI. It provides an opportunity to showcase the potential JRR has for increasing the effectiveness of addressing mass atrocities through genuine investigations. It also ensures that the JRR roster increases the pool of experts who can be made available to participate in investigations into international crimes. This training course in Washington, D.C. is the first of its kind to be held in North America. Previous training courses have been held throughout the world, including in Germany, Belgium, Argentina, Indonesia, the Netherlands, Qatar, Colombia, South Africa and Botswana. Upon successful completion of the training, participants may apply to be certified on the JRR roster. If certified, they will thereafter be available for rapid deployment upon request by States, as well as the United Nations, regional organizations, and other international institutions with the jurisdiction to carry out investigations. To date, there have already been forty successful rapid deployment missions, for example to the UN Commissions of Inquiry for Guinea, Cote d’Ivoire, Libya, Syria, North Korea and the Central African Republic. There have also been missions to support the International Criminal Court (ICC), MONUSCO Prosecution Support Cells in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, as well as national investigations in Mali, Colombia and Guatemala.

 

Further information about JRR, the Department of State and the Institute for International Criminal Investigations may be found on the following websites:

JRR – www.justicerapidresponse.org; Department of State – www.state.gov; IICI – www.iici.info.

JRR deployment to support MONUSCO Prosecution Support Cells

17/09/2014

A Prosecutions Advisor was deployed to the Prosecution Support Cells of the UN Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO) for a period of six months.

 

Please note that the nature of the work carried out by experts on the JRR Roster when deployed to assist States and organizations requires the information on this website on deployments to be of a general nature.

Finland takes over Chair of JRR’s Executive Board

5/09/2014

JRR welcomes the new Chair of its Executive Board, Finland, in the person of Ambassador Marjah Lehto. Ambassador Lehto has behind her nearly twenty years of diplomatic activity related to international peace and security as well as international law issues, mostly in a multilateral context (UN, EU, Council of Europe), and including negotiations on the establishment of the International Criminal Court. She has also had a few bilateral postings, most recently as Finland’s Ambassador to Luxembourg from 2009 to 2014. She has now returned to Helsinki as a special Ambassador in the Legal Service.

 

On the first week of her new appointment, Ambassador Lehto spent a very productive day at the JRR Offices in Geneva. The Secretariat very much looks forward to working with Ambassador Lehto in delivering on JRR’s mandate and fulfilling its vision of having the investigation of international crimes be as quick and professional as those of any crime in a domestic jurisdiction.

 

Executive Board members have all expressed their gratitude to their out-going Chair, Uganda, in the person of Ambassador Mirjam Blaak Sow, who greatly contributed to the growth and success of JRR. As Ambassador Blaak will continue to represent Uganda on the Executive Board, JRR will continue to benefit from her wisdom and energy.

JRR Deployment to support Commission of Inquiry on CAR

30/08/2014

A gender advisor / SGBV investigator was deployed through UN Women to support the UN Independent Commission of Inquiry on the Central African Republic for one month.

 

With Security Council Resolution S/RES 2127 the Secretary-General requested to rapidly establish an international commission of inquiry in order to immediately investigate reports of violations of international humanitarian law, international human rights law and abuses of human rights in CAR by all parties since 1 January 2013, to compile information, to help identify the perpetrators of such violations and abuses, point to their possible criminal responsibility and to help ensure that those responsible are held accountable.

 

Please note that the nature of the work carried out by experts on the JRR Roster when deployed to assist States and organizations requires the information on this website on deployments to be of a general nature.

JRR deployment to a regional organization

19/08/2014

In the first deployment to a regional organization, a total of six experts were deployed via UN Women. The team was composed of one gender adviser/sexual-based violence investigator, two forensic pathologists and three investigators. They will join an ongoing investigation for a period of two months.

 

Please note that the nature of the work carried out by experts on the JRR Roster when deployed to assist States and organizations requires the information on this website on deployments to be of a general nature.

Call for Nomination for JRR Certification Workshop on the margins of the 2014 World Forensic Festival in Seoul, Korea.

19/08/2014

JRR_Supervisor_Recommendation_Form_Seoul_2014Registrations for this course are now open – deadline extended to September 1, 2014

 

Justice Rapid Response (JRR)  will be holding a Certification Workshop on how best to use the expertise of forensic professionals within teams investigating mass atrocity crimes. At the kind invitation of the International Association of Forensic Sciences (IAFS) and the World Forensic Festival, the JRR Workshop will be held from 12 – 14 October 2014 in Seoul, South Korea, in conjunction with the 20th World Meeting of the International Association of Forensic Sciences, the 6th Asian Forensic Sciences Network Annual Meeting & Symposium and 5th Meeting of Asia Pacific Medico-Legal Association under the name of World Forensic Festival (WFF 2014). http://wff2014korea.org/program/index.php

 

The goal of this workshop is to increase the pool of forensic experts that can be rapidly available to the international community, through the JRR roster. JRR regularly assists States, the United Nations system, as well as other international institutions such as the International criminal Court (ICC) that have the jurisdiction to carry out investigations into such crimes. The workshop will be conducted in cooperation with JRR’s training partner, the Institute for International Criminal Investigations (IICI). Please note that attendance at all sessions of the workshop is a requirement to be considered for certification to the JRR roster.

 

All experts who are attending IAFS 2014 Meeting and the World Forensic Festival, especially professionals with expertise specified in the Call for Nomination below, and who are willing and could be made available for short-term international deployment at short notice are invited to submit their nomination. Please find below relevant information on JRR, the workshop, and the selection process.

 

The workshop is made possible thanks to a very generous contribution of the government of Finland, Denmark, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Canada and the Greenbaum Foundation, as well as the in-kind contribution of the IAFS.
IMPORTANT: potential applicants, please download the Call_for_Nominations_JRR Workshop_IAFS 2014 to read about the course modalities.

 

Additional information about JRR:

Justice_Rapid_Response_Fact_Sheet_ENGLISH_July 2014

Deployment FAQs – April 2014

 

 

Nomination package – Please download the forms below.  An application will be complete and considered for selection only after JRR has received the following completed documents:

1)      JRR Personal History Form – 2014  completed by the expert (submitted in two formats:  1. electronic/Excel; and, 2. hand-signed and scanned);

2)     JRR_Nomination_Form_Training Course_Seoul_2014  completed and hand-signed by the employer; this can be submitted by the applicant or directly by the nominating entity;

3)       completed, signed and sent to JRR directly by the supervisor of the expert.

 

Selection criteria – There are 25 positions available. Course participants will be chosen from among the nominations submitted on the basis of the expertise identified for this course and the qualifications and experience of the nominees.

 

Nominations and all application materials should be sent by email to training@justicerapidresponse.org

Please use the following subject line:  “IAFS 2014 Workshop Application – [Name of applicant]”

Deadline for all application materials: 

Monday, September 1, 2014

JRR  will regretfully not be able to consider applications received after this date.

 

 

 

 

 

JRR deployment to a regional organisation

19/08/2014

In the first JRR deployment to a regional organisation, a total of six experts were deployed via UN Women. The team was composed of one gender adviser/sexual and gender-based violence investigator, two forensic pathologists and three investigators. They will join an ongoing investigation for a period of two months.

 

Please note that the nature of the work carried out by experts on the JRR Roster when deployed to assist States and organizations requires the information on this website on deployments to be of a general nature.

JRR Deployment to support ICC Office of the Prosecutor

30/07/2014

Two investigators were deployed to the International Criminal Court’s Office of the Prosecutor (ICC OTP) to support ongoing international investigations for three months.

 

Please note that the nature of the work carried out by experts on the JRR Roster when deployed to assist States and organizations requires the information on this website on deployments to be of a general nature.