Past eventUnder 35s Forum

Human Rights in the EU After Lisbon

26 April 2010 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm

Chatham House, London


Ben Ward, Associate Director, Europe and Central Asia Division, Human Rights Watch
Chair: Sonya Sceats, Associate Fellow, International Law, Chatham House



The adoption of the Lisbon treaty brought significant changes to the human rights architecture of the European Union, bringing into force the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, and committing the EU to becoming a party to the European Convention on Human Rights. The new European Commission includes for the first time a Commissioner for Human Rights. The changes follow the creation of an independent EU Fundamental Rights Agency, and an increasing willingness of the European Court of Justice to apply human rights standards in its jurisprudence. The speaker will argue that these developments stand in contrast with a continued reluctance on the part of the EU to hold member states to account for clear breaches of their human rights obligations. He will suggest that the failure to do so not only undermines respect for human rights inside the EU, but also damages the EU's efforts to promote rights around the world.

This meeting is held in association with the Human Rights Watch London Network.

There will be a drinks reception beforehand from 18.30.