Social & Political Sciences

Social & Political Sciences Experts

Lyal S. Sunga

Affiliated Professor
Human Rights
Raoul Wallenberg Institute


 Lyal S. Sunga, is Visiting Professor at RWI, and former Head, Rule of Law program at The Hague Institute for Global Justice in The Netherlands, and former Special Advisor on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law at the International Development Law Organization in Rome, Italy. He holds a Bachelor of Arts (Carleton), Bachelor of Laws (Osgoode Hall Law School), Master of Laws in International Human Rights Law (Essex) and PhD in International Law (The Graduate Institute of International Studies). An internationally recognized specialist in international human rights law, international humanitarian law and international criminal law, Sunga has given presentations, university courses, lectures, training and conducted human rights technical assistance in some 55 countries. From 1994-2001, he was Human Rights Officer at the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva in which capacity he investigated facts and responsibilities relating to the 1994 genocide in Rwanda for the UN Security Council’s Commission of Experts on Rwanda, and he then backstopped the UN Human Rights Field Operation in Rwanda for several years before taking up the role of Coordinator for the Asia-Pacific Team in the Special Procedures Branch. In 1998, he served as OHCHR’s representative to the Rome Conference on the Establishment of a Permanent International Criminal Court. He has dealt with mandates on human rights defenders, counter-terrorism and human rights, human rights and the administration of criminal justice, and the situation in Iran among other countries. In 2000, he was Secretary of the Asian regional preparatory conference to the World Conference on Racism, held in Teheran. In 2007, he served as Coordinator for the UN Human Rights Council’s Group of Experts on Darfur. More recently, he has been working closely with OHCHR’s National Institutions and Regional Mechanisms Section as expert consultant. Over the last 25 years, he has worked or consulted with the UN Security Council, UNOHCHR, UNDP, UNDEF, UNESCO, UNU, UNHCR, UNITAR, UNODC, the ILO, EU, IDLO, Swiss Development Cooperation, as well as with National Human Rights Commissions in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Nepal, Nigeria, the Russian Federation and Uganda.  

Research Interest

 Human Rights

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