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Art, advocacy and academia: perspectives on disability

Former Disability Discrimination Commissioner Graeme Innes

Former Disability Discrimination Commissioner Graeme Innes will reflect on his time in the role during a wide-ranging conversation with leading authority on disability law, Professor Gerard Quinn from the National University Ireland, Galway.

Myanmar elections lack legitimacy without constitutional change

OPINION: Melissa Crouch, East Asia Forum, 26 May 2015.

Constitutional reform is an important part of Myanmar’s transition from military rule. Although widespread political reforms have been enacted since 2011, these have not yet been accompanied by constitutional change. The next few months will determine whether constitutional amendment will take place before the elections scheduled in November. This will affect the very legitimacy of the election itself.

Aboriginal future locked up by spiralling incarceration figures

Professor Chris Cunneen comments in The Saturday Paper (23 May 2015) on the impact of the ever-rising incarceration levels of Indigenous people in remote and regional communities on the future generations. 

No citizenship rights for terrorism supporters

Sangeetha Pillai, who is currently researching the legal dimensions of Australian Citizenship, speaks with 2SER (20 May 2015) about the Federal Government's plans to amend the Citizenship Act to remove citizenship from Australians involved in terrorism.

Listen to the full interview here.

“Justice will arrive” for Syrians says US Ambassador

US Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Stephen Rapp has told a public lecture at UNSW that “justice will arrive” for Syrians, who have suffered atrocities far worse than in most conflicts.

Speaking on the topic “Achieving justice when courts are not yet able: The challenge of Syria”, Ambassador Rapp said “when a conflict is happening, many say that’s not the time for justice”, but warns that the day will come for the Assad regime.

He said the regime is “document crazy”, leaving a paper trail that will make justice ultimately possible.

Ambassador Rapp said there are photos of 11,000 civilian tortured corpses taken by a former military photographer and more than 800,000 pages of documents.

20 years of revolutionising justice

It’s the first – and most popular – online free legal resource in Australia and this year marks its 20th anniversary.

“When we set out, we didn’t have any reason to suspect its influence would spread so far for so long,” says UNSW Professor Graham Greenleaf of the Australasian Legal Information Institute (AustLII), which he co-founded with Professor Andrew Mowbray from the University of Technology, Sydney in 1995.

AustLII’s 670 databases now receive over 600,000 hits each day, sourcing legal information from all Australasian jurisdictions.

Rohingya Community Seek Citizenship And Safety

Dr Melissa Crouch speaks to 2SER (21 May 2015) about the Rohingya people currently stranded at sea, as no country in the region is willing to give them asylum.

Listen to the full interview here.

No charges for suspected foreign fighters Matthew Gardiner and George Khamis

Professor George Williams comments in The Sydney Morning Herald (20 May 2015) on the laws passed late 2014 relating to foreign fighters.

Professor George Williams said: "The law is pretty direct and clear - there's no exception if you regret what you've done or changed your mind. And the offences relating to engaging in hostile activity outside of Australia or entering prescribed zones do not differentiate between either side in the conflict."

Asylum seekers launch High Court challenge to legality of offshore detention system

Professor George Williams comments on the launch of a High Court challenge by ten asylum seekers to the legality of the Federal Government's offshore detention system. (ABC News, 15 May 2015) 

  "Cause even though the Commonwealth will be put to the test, they will need to show that there is responsibility in the constitution over these matters," Professor Williams said.

Indigenous Sites No Longer "Sacred"

Dr Lucas Lixinski speaks with 2SER Radio (15 May 2015) regarding the removal of Indigenous sites from the State Cultural Heritage Register. More than 20 Indigenous sites have lost their cultural heritage status under a reinterpretation of the State's Heritage Laws, including Western Australia's Burrup Peninsula, home to the largest collection of ancient rock art in the world.