News and insights

Omnia thought-leaders participate in policy and advocacy discussions.

Amid court hearings, arbitration proceedings and key advisory projects, Omnia’s team continues to prioritise participation in multi-stakeholder policy and advocacy discussions to drive positive change. In the last few weeks:

* On 13th November, Adam Smith-Anthony participated as a “backbencher” in a cross-party discussion on establishing an International Anti-Corruption Court aimed at bringing to justice corrupt politicians, public officials and their accomplices as a court of last resort. The meeting featured US Judge Mark Wolf (Chair of Integrity Initiatives International) and was hosted and chaired by the Rt Hon the Lord (Peter) Hain in the Committee Rooms of the UK Parliament.

* On 14th, Lauren Lederle spoke at the ‘Iran – Justice for Victims of Crimes Against Humanity’ conference, again at the UK Parliament. Speaking alongside fellow panellists Prof. Javaid Rehman (UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran), Baroness Helena Kennedy KC (Director, International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute), Mr Geoffrey Robertson KC (Co-Head, Doughty Street Chambers), Lord Alton of Liverpool MP (Member, Parliament’s Joint Committee on Human Rights) and Laila Jazayeri (Director, Association of Anglo-Iranian Women in the UK), Lauren outlined the law on enforced disappearance, its recognition as a continuing act, the suffering of family members and their status as direct victims of the violation, and States’ toolbox for combating impunity in Iran.

* On 15th, after Omnia’s Cherie Blair CBE KC spoke at the Commonwealth Women’s Forum during CHOGM 2022 in Rwanda, Emily Hampshire attended the Commonwealth Women Leaders Event ‘A Call for Action – Safeguarding the Well-Being of Women and Children’. Hosted by the Rt Hon Patricia Scotland KC, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, the event addressed the prevalence of domestic violence and its effects on the physical and mental health of women and children, and how to make a positive difference in hard-to-reach populations across the Commonwealth. It was a day of compelling discussions and calls to action by leaders determined to effect real change, with HM The Queen joining to receive a report from the Secretary-General and to enjoy a reception.

* On 12 December 2023, Omnia Associate Lauren Lederle took part in a cross-party panel discussion on the escalating human rights crisis in Iran, held in the Parliamentary committee rooms of the Palace of Westminster. Lauren addressed the importance of universal jurisdiction as a critical tool in the fight against impunity, explaining some of the legal and practical challenges in pursuing legal action in UK courts and how these obstacles might be overcome. Drawing on Omnia’s experience advising States, corporates and civil society organisations (CSOs) on human rights and accountability mechanisms, Lauren discussed how UK authorities could strengthen their evidence-gathering and the identification of potential suspects by enhancing their collaboration with CSOs and survivors. Alongside Lauren on the panel, Lord Carlile, Prof Sara Chandler KC, Lord Alton of Liverpool, Bob Blackman CBE MP, Steve McCabe MP, and NCRI President-elect Maryam Rajavi contributed a diversity of perspectives and expertise, and provided much food for thought and a compelling call to action.

For more information on any of these discussions or on Omnia’s work in public international law, governance and accountability please get in touch.