Briefly Noted/Canadian Parliament Member to Speak at Law School About Hate, Genocide, Human Rights

Issue Date: 
January 8, 2007


The Pitt School of Law’s Center for International Legal Education and the Global Solutions Education Fund will present the 15th Annual McLean Lecture on World Law featuring Irwin Cotler, a member of Canadian House of Commons, at noon Jan. 11 in the Barco Law Building’s Teplitz Memorial Courtroom.

Cotler’s free public lecture is titled “Hate, Genocide, and Human Rights.”

Cotler has been a member of Canada’s Parliament since 1999 and was appointed the country’s Minister of Justice and Attorney General in 2003. A fervent advocate for human rights, gender equality, and minority representation, Cotler is the founder of the Save Darfur Parliamentary Coalition, cochair of the Parliamentary Human Rights Group, executive member of the Inter-Parliamentary Union, and an honorary member of the Liberal Women’s Caucus.
He also is a preeminent international human rights lawyer, having served as counsel to Andrei Sakharov in the Soviet Union, Nelson Mandela in South Africa, Jacobo Timmerman in Latin America, and Muchtar Pakpahan in Asia.

Cotler also was international legal counsel to imprisoned Russian environmentalist Aleksandr Nikitin, Nigerian playwright and Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka, the Chilean-Canadian group Vérité et Justice in the Pinochet case, and Chinese Canadian political prisoner Professor KunLun Zhang.

More recently, Cotler served as counsel to Professor Saad Edin Ibrahim, the leading democracy advocate in the Arab world.
Cotler is the director of the Human Rights Programme, chair of InterAmicus, and a law professor at McGill University in Montreal. He has been a visiting professor at Harvard Law School and a Woodrow Wilson Fellow at Yale Law School; he has received eight honorary doctorates.

The McLean Lecture on World Law honors the memory and contributions of Maclean W. McLean, a founder, executive director, and executive vice president of the Pittsburgh World Federalist Association chapter, now Global Solutions Education Fund, Pittsburgh.

This lecture has been approved by the Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education Board for one hour of substantive Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credits. There is a $25 fee for credit. For CLE details, call 412-648-7023 or e-mail