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Amal Clooney hits back at Cherie Blair as Maldives legal battle escalates

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Amal Clooney hits back at Cherie Blair as Maldives legal battle escalates

Post by Nicky80 on Thu Sep 24, 2015 2:08 pm

Amal Clooney hits back at Cherie Blair as Maldives legal battle escalates

Amal Clooney has hit back at Cherie Blair in the latest round of their increasingly bitter legal battle over the Maldives government and its treatment of the island’s former ousted leader.
The pair of international human rights lawyers have clashed repeatedly since Mrs Blair began acting for the autocratic government that helped organise the overthrow and prosecution of the country’s first democratically-elected leader.
Mrs Clooney is acting pro-bono for the former president Mohamed Nasheed, who was jailed was jailed for 13 years in March over controversial terrorism charges in a trial Amnesty International described as a “travesty of justice”.
Mrs Clooney and her legal team, who are acting pro-bono, have called for sanctions such as asset freezes and travel bans to be imposed on senior officials of the Indian Ocean state.

Omnia Strategy, the London and Washington-based consultancy Mrs Blair founded and chairs, has been advising President Abdulla Yameen’s government on “democracy consolidation”. The value of the contract, signed in June, is not known.
Earlier this month Mrs Blair said Mrs Clooney’s call for sanctions was “inappropriate and unjustified”.
The former Prime Minister’s wife said: “Sanctions are imposed in exceptional circumstances to force compliance with international law, where there is a threat to peace, or where they are imposed in response to a specific policy. They ought not be used when dealing with a single case.”
Mrs Blair also said the use of such sanctions threatened the economic stability of the Maldives.
Mrs Clooney rubbished Mrs Blair’s claims. “Such suggestions are entirely misplaced,” she said in a joint statement with her co-counsel Ben Emmerson QC and Jared Genser. “On the contrary, there are precedents from all around the world of targeted sanctions being imposed in cases similar to President Nasheed’s, where state authorities violated an individual’s human rights by subjecting him to a politically-motivated prosecution, an unfair trial and an unjustifiable sentence. 

“Such sanctions can be imposed by a single state or by an international organization and – far from affecting the entire population or the economy of the Maldives as a whole – they can be targeted to specific individuals directly responsible for the relevant human rights violations.”
Mrs Clooney’s legal team said targeted sanctions can be appropriate even to address individual cases of human rights violations where a government persists in flouting its obligations under international law.
They argued precedents have been set: the United States imposed travel bans and the freezing of assets on 18 Russian officials involved in the malicious prosecution of the lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky, who was unfairly denied bail and remanded for an extensive period in custody, where he ultimately died. 
“Similarly, the European Union ordered the freezing of funds belonging to several named Iranian and Belarusian officials for their role in human rights violations: individual judges were sanctioned for issuing disproportionate sentences following unfair trials that violated the basic rights of the accused, as were the prosecutors and government officials involved in such proceedings,” they said.

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Re: Amal Clooney hits back at Cherie Blair as Maldives legal battle escalates

Post by Joanna on Thu Sep 24, 2015 8:25 pm

Very Interesting.

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