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Newsletter - January-February 2022

February 14, 2022

Source: MIGS


- MIGS launched a Call for Proposals for its annual Artificial Intelligence and Human Rights Forum to be held on April 25-29, 2022. Proposal submissions are due no later than end of February 2022. 

- The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights published their biennial (2022)publication of when, where and how OSCE participating States promote the commemoration and study of the Holocaust, including the genocide of Roma and Sinti. MIGS is referenced within this publication.

- MIGS welcomes Breanna Cera Emard as a new project officer. Breanna completed a graduate degree at the Balsillie School of International Affairs and previously was an intern at MIGS.

- MIGS has become a stakeholder partner of the Principles for Peace initiative. On January 31, MIGS convened a session on the Impact of Social Media and Disinformation on Security and Stabilization Missions. Speakers MIGS’ Distinguished Senior Fellow Lieutenant-General Roméo Dallaire, Hiba Qasas (Head of Secretariat, Principles for Peace), Anne-Marie Buzatu (Vice President and Chief Operations Officer of ICT4Peace Foundation), Sacha Meuter ( Head of Policy and Research at Fondation Hirondelle--Media for Peace and Human Dignity), Dr. Pauline Bend (country representative for the Fondation Hirondelle – Media for Peace and Human Dignity— in the Democratic Republic of Congo), Dr. Katrin Wittig (UN Political Affairs Officer in Bamako Mali), General Jay Janzen (Strategic Communications Director at NATO) and Christopher Tuckwood (Executive Director of the Sentinel Project).

- On February 3, MIGS also convened a session on the Role of Religion and Religious Leaders in Security and Stabilization. Speakers included Ahmed Shaheed (UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion), Dr. Jacqueline Ogega (Director of Gender Equality and Social Inclusion at World Vision US), Dr. Mohamed Elsanousi (Executive Director of the Network for Religious and Traditional Peacemakers), Dr. Susan Hayward (Associate Director for the Religious Literacy and the Professions Initiative (RLPI) at Harvard Divinity School), Mubin Shaikh (Counter Extremism Specialist), Chaplain Steve Moore (Canadian Armed Forces, United Church of Canada), and Jonathan Granoff (President Global Security Institute). 


January 24

MIGS co-signed a joint statement calling on the UN Security Council to hold an open briefing on the human rights crisis in Myanmar. 

January 27

MIGS co-signed an open letter calling on the UN Human Rights Council and OHCHR to immediately establish an investigation into the 1988 massacre of political prisoners in Iran.

MIGS joined Human Rights Watch and over 200 other global NGOs in calling for countries to diplomatically boycott the Beijing Winter Olympics over human rights concerns.

Upcoming Events

February 17

MIGS’ Executive Director Kyle Matthews will speak at the “Women leaders on the front line of digital hate and violence” conversation hosted by the Embassy of Canada to France in partnership with the French National Digital Council. The conversation will highlight the disproportionate impact of digital violence on women. You can register here

Recent Events

January 12

MIGS’ John Lemieux Student Fellow Nadia Trudel interviewed Oren Segal, Oren Segal, Vice President of the Center on Extremism for Anti Defamation League. This episode was part of a series of podcasts planned for the ‘Canadian Taskforce to Combat Online Antisemitism’. You can listen to this episode and others here.

January 12

MIGS hosted the 3rd virtual policy dialogue as part of the project ‘Canadian Taskforce to Combat Online Antisemitism’. This event focused on developing a whole-of-society approach to building Canadian resiliency to online antisemitism. Speakers included Irwin Cotler (Raoul Wallenberg Center for Human Rights and Special Envoy on Preserving Holocaust Remembrance and Combatting Antisemitism), Shimon Fogel (CIJA), Michael Levitt (Friends of the Simon Wiesenthal Center), and Heather Mann (UNESCO). 

January 18

MIGS organized the last event of its series on digital authoritarianism supported by the US Embassy to Canada. The discussion titled “What's next? US-Canadian relationship to confront digital authoritarianism” featured U.S. Consul General Ana Escrogima, David Kaye (clinical professor of law, University of California, and former UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression), Chris Walker (VP for Studies and Analysis, National Endowment for Democracy), Suzanne Nossel (Chief Executive Officer of PEN America), Ron Deibert (Director of the Citizen Lab at the Munk School, University of Toronto) and Inga Kristina Trauthig (Research Manager and Senior Research Fellow, Center for Media Engagement, University of Texas, and Research Fellow at the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation). You can watch a recording of the event here.

January 27

As part of the new episode of Human Rights Talks MIGS student fellow Nadia Trudel interviewed Dr. Kathrin Meyer, Secretary General of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance.

January 28

Marie Lamensch delivered a course in French on digital authoritarianism for Global Affairs Canada and the Clinique internationale de défense des droits humains at UQÀM. 

February 1

In MIGS new episode of Human Rights Talks, Kyle Matthews interviewed Richard Marceau a former MP and senior advisor for the Center for Israel and Jewish Affairs on online antisemitism and hate.

February 2

MIGS Fellow Joana Cook participate in an event titled “Foundations of the Foreign Fighter Problem: Investigating Blindspots Relating to Gender, Minors, and Families.” The event focused on discussing the scope of the “foreign fighter problem” and provided insights into major knowledge gaps relating to gender, minors, and families.

In the Media

December 17

Lt-General Roméo Dallaire was inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame 2021. The Walk of Fame recognizes Canadians from a variety of fields for "their distinctive accomplishments and successes but also for their philanthropy, advocacy, and contributions toward the greater good."

 December 26

Marie Lamensch published an article in La Presse on the feminist movements and silencing of #MeToo in China titled “Ces Femmes qui Font Trembler Pékin”.

January 2

Ewelina Ochab wrote an article in Forbes titled “People Of Myanmar Face Unprecedented Crisis In 2022, The U.N. Warns”.

January 6

MIGS Fellow Dr. Ewelina U. Ochab wrote the article “The End of Media Freedom in Hong Kong”published on Forbes website.

January 16

Dr. Ewelina U. Ochab wrote an article on Forbes titled “Tigray Hospital In Urgent Need of Assistance With Food and Medical Supplies”.

 January 20

MIGS fellow Dr. Ewelina U. Ochab published an article on Forbes titled “One in Seven Christian Minorities Under Threat in 2022”.

January 21

Kyle Matthews is quoted in the Radio Free Asia article “Security researchers spot flaws, surveillance in official Beijing Olympics app”.

January 25

Kyle Matthews was interviewed by CTV on the situation between Russia and the Ukraine.

January 26

MIGS Fellow Naomi Kikoler spoke to the World Affairs Council in a webinar entitled “Giving Meaning to “Never Again”: Preventing Genocide and Crimes against Humanity”.

January 27

MIGS Fellow Dr. Ewelina U. Ochab wrote an article for the International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust, the article “For the Holocaust Remembrance Day We Must Seek Memory, Dignity And Justice” was published by Forbes.  

February 1

Kyle Matthews is featured in Montreal Gazette article “Convoy protesters' use of Nazi symbols 'shocking in 2022': genocide expert”.

MIGS Fellow Phil Gurski was quoted in the Ottawa Citizen article “How do you avoid a truck protest on Wellington in the future? Build a tramway there”.

Dr. Ewelina U. Ochab wrote an article published by Forbes titled “There is Only One Winner Of The Winter Olympics 2022”. She also wrote an article titled “ One Year Of The Military Junta In Power In Myanmar”. 

February 3

MIGS Fellow Mark Kersten wrote an article for the Globe and Mail titled “Calling COVID-19 vaccine mandates a ‘crime against humanity’ isn’t just wrong, it’s dangerous”.

February 3 

Kyle Matthews wrote an article published by the Macdonald-Laurier Institute titled “Will Canada Finally Take a Stand Against China’s Totalitarian Use of Tech?: Kyle Matthews for Inside Policy”.

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