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The NCHR Occasional Paper Series is an open publication channel reflecting the work carried out by the Centre as a whole on a range of human rights topics. It is published on an irregular basis, with contributions from NCHR’s researchers, guests, master students, and the various international programmes and thematic working groups.
The objective of the Series is to provide an insight into the work carried out at the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights, and disseminate it both internally and externally. It provides a way for NCHR’s staff and students to publish relevant information in a freely accessible format.
Its scope includes activity reports, thematic reports, conference/seminar papers, master theses, reflective essays or reports on completed projects. The papers are published by submission or invitation.
The papers are published in the name of the author, and their views do not necessarily reflect those of the NCHR.
Editor: Stener Ekern
This paper, Blurring the Line between Countering Terrorism and Countering Dissent: The Case of Saudi Arabia, is written by Dr Norman Cigar, a Research Fellow at the Marine Corps University, Quantico, VA, from which he retired recently as Director of Regional Studies and the Minerva Research Chair.
In the Introduction, Dr. Cigar writes: In recent days, the focus on human rights with respect to Saudi Arabia, understandably, has centered on the disappearance and brutal murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey. In many ways, to be sure, the Khashoggi case speaks to the whole human rights issue in Saudi Arabia and has represented a poignant “teaching moment.” While the Khashoggi case deserves an extensive and detailed study of its own, given its importance and its repercussions, there are also additional aspects of the human rights environment in Saudi Arabia that serve as the background against which such individual incidents can best be analyzed and understood.
The Food, Human Rights and Corporations (FoHRC) Research and action network, which is affiliated to the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights (NCHR), is pleased to present a new collection of papers based on one of its seminars held in collaboration with FIAN Norway, and this time also the Norwegian National Nutrition Council.
The seminar from which material to the Occasional Paper #10-2018 is provided from, dealt with aspects of nutritional health as impacted through the intermediary of the diet and in a human rights perspective. With the title Human Rights and Healthy Diets, the seminar was pre-announced by asking Does the food industry have a responsibility to respect the human right to adequate food and diet-related health?. The seminar took as a point of departure the challenges to businesses and governments seen through the lens of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, illuminated by five different actors.
Sarah Gwyneth McMains completed her Master of Philosophy in the Theory and Practice of Human Rights at the University of Oslo in 2017. Her master’s thesis is titled “Translating feminist norms and strategies through sexual and gender-based violence programming in Somalia: An explorative approach to understanding norm internalization”. In it, she explores and analyzes various translation processes of international norms into a domestic setting through SGBV programming in Somalia. The goal of the exploration was to deepen understanding of the nuanced processes involved in norm internalization and how it impacts the long-term sustainability of SGBV programming. Her research and fieldwork in Kenya were funded by a scholarship graciously received from Fritt Ord.
She currently volunteers with the Vigdís Freedom Foundation (Oslo) as a Project and Legal Coordinator. The Foundation is a non-profit organization that advocates for and supports women prisoners of conscience and human rights defenders.
On 13 June 2016 a seminar titled Investments and Land Rights – the role of the private sector in ensuring responsible governance of tenure - was held in Oslo, arranged by the interdisciplinary research and action network Food, Human Rights and Corporations (FoHRC) and FIAN Norway. This was not a typical academic seminar focused on producing academic publications – just as important was to engage with government and civil society, bringing attention to, and learning about the issues raised.
In this publication we present a number of short essays developed from the workshop presentations. They are introduced by Aksel Tømte, who moderated the morning session and here sets the stage for the issues concerned, and also briefly reviews the various contributions to this publication
The programme for the seminar is attached at the end of the publication.
Zoë Eunjae Lee graduated from the Master of Philosophy programme in the Theory and Practice of Human Rights at the University of Oslo in 2016.
In it, she explores the protection void presented in the case study of North Korean refugees and questions whether the findings prompt the international community to reinterpret non-refoulement obligation. She currently works at the Norwegian Human Rights Fund.