The Greek refugee crisis: whose human rights - whose responsibilities?

13 March 2020

Asylum-seekers at the Greek island of Lesbos are in a vulnerable position. They claim basic human rights and hold the Europeans accountable. What can a human rights scholar do? His role is limited. When there is no political will, compassion and solidarity are gone.

Fons Coomans

Prof Fons Coomans holds the UNESCO Chair in Human Rights and Peace at the Department of International and European Law at the Faculty of Law, Maastricht University. He is the Director of the Maastricht Centre for Human Rights, and a member of the Netherlands Network for Human Rights Research. His fields of research include the international protection of economic, social and cultural rights, the right to education, health and food in particular, the extraterritorial scope of human rights law, and international supervisory mechanisms in the field of human rights. He teaches Master courses on international human rights law and on human development and human rights at the Faculty of Law of Maastricht University. He is a founding member of the Consortium on Extraterritorial Human Rights Obligations and member of the Dutch Section of the International Commission of Jurists (NJCM). He is also a visiting professor at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. He is an advisor to Food First Information Action Network (FIAN) and the Right to Education Initiative and a consultant for UNESCO. Since 2017 he is a founding member of the Human Rights of Future Generations Initiative.