A landmark step for human rights in the Asia Pacific region
This conference could be a landmark step for human rights in the Asia Pacific. It has long been argued that the region represents an ‘air pocket’ or gap in human rights because, unlike other world regions, it lacks regional human rights treaties or implementation frameworks. However, the argument is hardly true – at least, in one important aspect: the Asia Pacific is equipped with a multitude of human rights advocates, including many lawyers, who are devoted to fighting oppression and securing justice the victims of human rights abuses. Nevertheless, other criticisms of regional performance do hold true, largely because human rights lawyers in the Asia Pacific have had few opportunities to work together.
With the support of LAWASIA, a strong voice for the regional legal profession, this conference will be a valuable first step in assisting and encouraging lawyers in the Asia Pacific to work together. I am delighted and grateful that the Bar Association of India, too, has taken such initiative in supporting and collaborating with LAWASIA.
Finally, I must also express what an exciting opportunity this is for international delegates to travel to India – one of the world’s oldest civilisations and one of its most emergent societies. I hope you will join us and enjoy the chance to explore its wonders.
Prof Yasushi Higashizawa
Co-Chair of the Human Rights Section, LAWASIA