Author of Britain’s Anti-Terrorism Laws to Speak at HLS

Post Date: March 8, 2004

On Monday, March 8, British Home Secretary and Member of Parliament The Right Honorable David Blunkett will give an address entitled, “Human Rights and the Terrorist Threat: Defending the Democratic State and maintaining Liberty–Two Sides of the Same Coin.” The speech, which is sponsored by the Harvard University Committee on Human Rights Studies, will begin at 5 p.m. in the Ames Courtroom.

“As author of Britain’s recent anti-terrorism laws, Mr. Blunkett will offer a unique perspective on the relationship between human rights and security concerns,” says Jacqueline Bhahba, executive director of the University Committee on Human Rights Studies. “David Blunkett is a central and controversial figure in British politics today. He has played a leading role in defining Britain’s response to 9-11, challenging many aspects of the British status quo. It will be fascinating to hear what he has to say.”

The home secretary will be speaking on the topic of civil renewal the following evening at the JFK Jr. Forum at the Kennedy School of Government.

Blunkett, who was appointed home secretary on June 8, 2001, was first elected to Parliament in June 1987, representing the Sheffield Brightside seat. He was opposition spokesman on environment from 1988 to 1992. From 1997 through 2001, he served as secretary of state for education and employment.

This lecture is part of a yearlong lecture series sponsored by the UCHRS entitled Human Rights and the War on Terrorism. On April 8 at 5 p.m., Egyptian scholar and human rights activist Saad Eddin Ibrahim will give the concluding talk of the series in the JFK Jr. Forum.