Czech Centre for Human Rights and Democracy

The Centre is an independent academic institution monitoring human rights developments both domestically and worldwide, issuing a monthly Bulletin, as well as organizing conferences.

07/27/2020 - 21:39   Tereza Ciupková

Human trafficking for sexual purposes has become one of the most profitable violations of human rights. There are an estimated 40 million victims of human trafficking, 71% of whom are women. One of the countries with the highest number of victims of sex trafficking is Nigeria. Most Nigerian women leave their homes in hopes of a better future, but in reality become victims of a very organized and sophisticated net of human trafficking and sexual slavery.

The Nigerian wave of immigration to Europe had already begun in the 80s, when mostly women saw a possibility of economic improvement by leaving Africa and moving to Europe. Many of them travelled with false documents and became prostitutes in European cities as finding regular jobs was difficult without legal status in the country. While lying about the reality to their families, many Nigerian families saved and even borrowed money to send other children to Europe as well.

07/15/2020 - 13:06   Douglas Radcliff

Through constant technological advances, many questions regarding human rights arise. Does artificial intelligence and technology play a role in human rights? If so, does it help to protect human rights or does technology infringe upon them in certain ways? 

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is “the capability of a machine to imitate intelligent human behavior.” This can include many forms of technology, including security camera services, computers, phones, etc. On the one hand technology leads to economic growth and new discoveries, however, it is important to also recognize that technological advances have the ability to lead to increased access to personal information of most people in society. For example, the Australian Human Rights Commission fears that both the government and the public in general are behind the speed of technological development; in other words, neither recognizes the full force of technology. 

07/01/2020 - 12:07   Aneta Frodlová

Justice reforms in Poland have now been criticized for several years by Polish lawyers as well as the EU. Disciplinary punishment of judges will now be handled by a special Disciplinary Panel after the latest amendment. What was the reaction of the EU and what will follow?  

Since 2015, Poland has been adopting major reforms, reshaping the foundations of its judicial system. Many of these came into force while both the laic and expert public demonstrated their discontent with these changes of the Polish justice system.

06/26/2020 - 13:55  

You can download the spring V4 Human Rights Review here.

We are delivering the summer issue of the online journal V4 Human Rights Review, which provides information on the developments in the areas of human rights and democracy in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.

We start with a contribution by Veronika Haász concerning the role of National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) in the V4 countries. The author explains the competences and importance of NHRIs as independent guardians and promoters of human rights. Furthermore, she discusses the current situation in all four countries with regard to the existence, work and impact of these institutions.

05/18/2020 - 21:15  

The Head of the Czech Centre Jan Lhotský published an article in the international blog Opinio Juris, in which he discusses the upcoming review of the human rights treaty bodies based in Geneva, which will be dealt with by the UN General Assembly during this year. In an article titled Human Rights Treaty Body Review 2020 – Introducing the Integrated Treaty Body System as a More Ambitious Alternativethe author presents a proposal of an integrated model of the treaty bodies, which would be better prepared to deal with growing numbers of state reports and individual complaints for human rights violations that are coming to the committees from different parts of the world.

05/14/2020 - 19:40   ​​​​​​​Petra Olivová

At the end of January 2020, the French bill for in-vitro fertilization for single women and lesbians passed the Senate's first reading. The bill was passed with 160 votes in favour and 116 against. It aims to ensure that French women will have the ability to raise their biological children and thus preserve their genetic information.

Political background

France has one of the strictest laws on approach to fertility treatment in Europe. The access to equal rights related to the assisted reproduction for lesbians and single women was a campaign promise of Emmanuel Macron ahead of the presidential elections in 2017. The bill is a part of a new comprehensive bioethics law, and it is also one of Macron’s first major social reforms during his presidency. 

04/14/2020 - 14:56  

You can download Czech Human Rights Review here.

The Czech Centre for Human Rights and Democracy is proud to present a new issue of the Czech Republic Human Rights Review examining the year of 2019. Together with our members and trainees, we have prepared a total of 11 articles that are related to the Czech Republic.

To start the Review, we are pleased to publish a very special story. In 2019, we commemorated the 80th anniversary of Sir Nicholas Winton’s trains, which saved the lives of 669 Jewish children on the brink of World War II from the occupied territory of Czechoslovakia. We asked one of the rescued children, John Karlik, to share his memories.