Swansea University hosts conference on the ASEAN Human Rights Mechanism

On 1 May 2015, the Department of Political and Cultural Studies (PCS) at Swansea University hosted an international conference on the evolving Human Rights Mechanism of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

ASEANThe conference was the third in a series of six scheduled to be held between 2014 and 2016 in Swansea and Manila as part of a research project, ‘Beyond Cultural Relativism: The Human Rights Mechanism of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Context, 2014-2016’, funded by the British Academy. The project brings together colleagues from Swansea University and the University of the Philippines, Diliman (UPD) working in the fields of politics, international relations and law, led by Dr Gerard Clarke from PCS.  (Image l-r  Mr Rafendi Djamin, Dr Gerard Clarke, Lord Williams, Prof. Raul Pangalangan, Prof. Elizabeth Aguiling-Pangalangan and Prof. Jorge Tigno.)

In contrast to international criticism, labelling it as an example of ‘cultural relativism’ or of ‘regional particularity’, the project explores the ASEAN human rights mechanism as a valuable addition to global and national mechanisms to promote and protect universal human rights standards and to ASEAN’s plans to become a people-oriented community.

Rafendi Djamin

Gerard ClarkeThe third conference included papers from Jamie Stacey (PCS) and Dr Simon Hoffman, (College of Law) from Swansea University, and from Prof Raul Pangalangan, (College of Law) and Prof. Jorge Tigno (Department of Political Science) from UPD. The keynote speaker was Mr Rafendi Djamin, Representative of Indonesia and former Chairman, ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (pictured left).  

The conference was opened and closed by Lord Williams of Baglan, honorary fellow in the Dept of Political and Cultural Studies and former United Nations Under-Secretary General.

The audience primarily consisted of PCS post-graduate students, including students on the MA Development and Human Rights, as well as national and international guests.

(Image left:  Dr Gerard Clarke, Department of Political and Cultural Studies)

Department of Political and Cultural Studies at Swansea University.