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Newsletter - September 2021

September 22, 2021

Source: MIGS


MIGS is pleased to be an official partner of Interpeace’s Principles for Peace (P4P) Initiative. MIGS will support its Distinguished Senior Fellow, General Roméo Dallaire, in his work as commissioner for the thematic area ‘Security and Stabilisation’.

Thanks to funding from Heritage Canada, MIGS’ "Canadian Task Force to Combat Online Antisemitism" is getting off the ground with the first roundtable event to take place on October 6th. We are pleased to welcome Michael Levitt (President & CEO of the Friends of the Simon Wiesenthal Center) as the newest member of the advisory committee. Other advisors include: Irwin Cotler (Canada's Special Envoy for Preserving Holocaust Remembrance and Combatting Antisemitism, Chair of the Raoul Wallenberg Center for Human Rights and Former Minister of Justice), Tom Mulcair (Visiting Professor at Université de Montréal and Former Leader of the NDP), Naomi Kikoler (Director, Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide at US Holocaust Memorial Museum and MIGS Fellow), Dr. Catherine Chatterley (Founding Director of the Canadian Institute for the Study of Antisemitism).

MIGS invites applications for its John Lemieux Student Fellowship Program for the 2021/2022 academic year. The program offers an opportunity for graduate and undergraduate students at Concordia University to gain an experiential learning experience  and develop practical skills in the field of human rights. Learn more about this opportunity here.


MIGS signed on to the Canadian Campaign for Afghan Peace’s open letter calling on Canada to take immediate action for Afghanistan. 

MIGS signed a letter by Refugees International urging action to find missing Yazidi women and children.

MIGS signed on to QUNO’s statement for the International Day of Peace calling on UN Member States to, refocus on peace, protect human rights and fundamental freedoms, and step away from securitized responses. 

MIGS signed an open letter to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Permanent Representative of Security Council Member States on ending the violence and famine in Tigray, Ethiopia.

Upcoming Events

30 September

Executive Director Kyle Matthews will interview Kenneth Roth, Executive Director and Human Rights Watch, at an event co-hosted by MIGS and the Montreal’s Council on Foreign Relations (CORIM). Register here.

6 October 

MIGS is hosting the first of three roundtables as part of the Canadian Taskforce to Combat Online Antisemitism project. Discussants include: Tom Mulcair (Université de Montreal), Barbara Perry (Ontario Tech University & International Network on Hate Studies), Oren Segal (Center on Extremism), Imran Ahmed (Center for Countering Digital Hate) and Emmanuelle Amar (CIJA).  Space is limited but should you be interested, please email us at

19 October

MIGS is organizing the 4th event of its series on digital authoritarianism supported by the US Embassy to Canada. The panel  ‘Digital Authoritarianism Without Borders’ will feature speakers  Steven Feldstein (Senior Fellow, Carnegie Endowment for International), Jessica Brandt (Policy Director for the Artificial Intelligence and Emerging Technology Initiative, Brookings Institution), Yinka Adegoke (Strategic Initiatives editor at Rest of World),  and Noura Aljizawi (Researcher, CitizenLab). You can register here.

Recent Events

3 September

MIGS Executive Director Kyle Matthews and Project Officer Lauren Salim attended the Opening Meeting of the United Nations Counter Terrorism Committee.

MIGS Fellow Naomi Kikoler moderated “Seeking Justice for the Yezidi Genocide: Seven Years Later.” organized by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.  

10 September 

Kyle Matthews, Project Coordinator Marie Lamensch, and Distinguished Senior Fellow Romeo Dallaire had the honor to meet with U.S. Consul General Ana Escrogima to discuss MIGS’ ongoing projects.

14 September

MIGS organized  the third event of its speaker series on digital authoritarianism, an initiative supported by the US Embassy to Canada. Panelist included Paul Mozur (journalist, New York Times), Ainikki Riikonen (Researcher, Center for a New American Security), Sheena Greitens (Associate Professor, LBJ School of Public Affairs University of Texas at Austin), and Margaret McCuaig-Johnston Senior Fellow at the Institute for Science, Society and Policy, University of Ottawa). You can watch the discussion here.

15 September

In collaboration with Parliamentarians for Global Action, MIGS co-hosted “Large-Scale Human Rights Violations in Afghanistan: What Can Be Done to Prevent New Atrocities?”. Notes from the meeting are available here.

20 September

Kyle Matthews participated in the  Renewing Our Democratic Alliance (RODA) webinar titled “Refugees and Inclusion” organized by the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung and the Canadian International Council.

MIGS fellow Dr. Ewelina Ochab participated in a panel discussion titled ‘Responding to the Uyghur Genocide: Assessing Policy and Legislative Options for the U.S.’

MIGS hosted its first in-person Democracy Drinks, a monthly informal networking event for citizens to talk about democracy and foreign policy.

21 September 

MIGS Digital Fellow Dr. Ewelina Ochab participated in a panel discussion organized by Newlines Institute for Strategy and Policy titled “Gender Analysis of Contemporary Genocides.”

MIGS hosted its first Twitter Space conversation “Canada’s post-election foreign policy agenda: a discussion on advancing human rights.”  

In the Media

25 August 

MIGS Distinguished Senior Fellow Romeo Dallaire co-authored ”The high cost of ignoring a children’s peace and security agenda in Afghanistan” in the Toronto Star. 

Ewelina Ochab published an article in Forbes titled “Actions Not Words: We Need More Than Mere Promises That The Taliban Will Respect Human Rights.”

27 August

Project Coordinator Marie Lamensch wrote an article for the Centre for International Governance Innovation titled The Fall of Kabul: When Platforms Enable Propaganda.

10 September

MIGS Digital Fellow Michael Petrou wrote an article for titled “Remembering 9/11 and the wars that followed.”

Ewelina Ochab wrote an article for Forbes titled “​​When Schools Are Not Safe Places: Education Under Attack Globally.” 

12 September

Ewelina Ochab published an article in Forbes titled “A Whole Generation Of Human Rights Defenders May Perish In Afghanistan.”

15 September

Ewelina Ochab published an article in Forbes titled “The North Korean Regime Continues To Get Away With Some Of The Worst Atrocities Of The 21st Century.”

MIGS Distinguished Senior Fellow Romeo Dallaire was quoted in India Education Diary’s article titled “University Of Alberta: Leaders Need Moral Courage Now More Than Ever Amid Ethical Dilemmas, Says Roméo Dallaire” 

17 September

MIGS’ Digital Fellow Phil Gurski wrote an article on his blog titled “What do the New Zealand stabbings tell us about terrorism?”

MIGS Digital Fellow Joana Cook spoke to France24 about the 20th anniversary of 9/11. 

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