Following on from the successful conference last month ‘Women and Poverty: A Human Rights Approach’ in Rwanda last month funded by The Law Foundation, Oxford Martin Programme on Human Rights for Future Generations (HRFG) and the Oxford Human Rights Hub (OxHRH), OxHRH continues to forge sustainable partnerships in East Africa.

At the invitation of Dr Francois Xavier Kalinda, acting Dean of the University of Rwanda, OxHRH Director, Professor Sandra Fredman visited the University of Rwanda in Butare following the conference in order to met with students and faculty members from the law faculty.  Dr Kalinda gave a talked to a packed classroom of more than 100 law students on the role of human rights law as an external framework of accountability for legislatures, contrasting Nazi Germany and apartheid South Africa’s use of law with constitutional democracy, and spoke about about the ways in which law could be used to achieve social change.  Professor Fredman was deeply impressed by the level of engagement from the student audience, who raised important questions ranging from challenging points about cultural pluralism,  sexual orientation, abortion, euthanasia – to the difference between good constitutions on paper and real implementation, to the role of human rights law in conflict situations and its relationship with international humanitarian law.