November 14, 2016 Miranda Warning is Subject of Human Rights Day Program Dec. 9

Press Contact: Audrey Fischer (202) 707-0022
Public Contact: Liah Caravalho (202) 707-6462

In celebration of Human Rights Day, the Law Library of Congress will host a discussion on the impact of the Miranda warning on human rights in Eastern Europe. The event will feature a panel of distinguished American and European politicians and scholars who will address how American laws have affected human rights developments in Romania and the former Soviet Union.

The discussion will take place from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 9 in Room LJ-119, located on the first floor of the Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E., Washington, D.C. The event is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. Tickets are not required.

The panelists will include Monica Macovei of Romania, a member of the European Parliament and former Minister of Justice; Kyle Parker, senior professional staff member of the U.S. House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee; Will Pomeranz, deputy director of the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies of the Woodrow Wilson Center; and Natella Boltyanskaya, Russian journalist and historian of the Soviet dissident movement. Peter Roudik, director of Global Legal Research at the Law Library of Congress, will serve as the moderator.

This event is part of the Law Library’s annual commemoration of Human Rights Day, which marks the adoption in 1948 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). The declaration was designed to provide a global framework for human rights following World War II and the colonial era. The declaration, the first global enunciation of human rights, is considered the most-translated document in modern history. It is available in more than 360 languages, and new translations are still being added.

The event also marks the 50th anniversary the U.S. Supreme Court decision, Miranda v. Arizona. The ruling requires that criminal suspects will be informed about their constitutional rights at the time of their arrest and before interrogation. This warning, which became a part of the U.S. criminal prosecution process, not only protects constitutional rights of Americans, but it also serves as an inspiring example for those who fight injustice in totalitarian states.

Macovei served as minister of justice of Romania from 2004 through 2007. She is credited with implementing the justice reforms required for Romania to become a member state of the European Union. She initiated and conducted reforms which led to the democratization of law enforcement and implementation of human rights in post-1989 Romania.

Parker is a foreign affairs professional who shaped U.S. foreign policy. For many years, he worked as a policy adviser for the U.S. Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe and as vice president of the American Foreign Policy Council. He developed and managed high-level political exchanges with post-Soviet states and devised strategies and legislation on varied policy matters.

In addition to his position at the Woodrow Wilson Center, Pomeranz teaches Russian law at the Georgetown University Law Center. He practiced law in the U.S. and Russia and served as a program officer for Russia, Ukraine and Belarus at the National Endowment for Democracy. His expertise is in post-Soviet legal developments.

Boltyanskaya, a historian and journalist at the Russian Echo of Moscow radio station, is presently a scholar-in-residence at the Law Library of Congress, working on research related to the legacy of Soviet dissident movement. In 2015, in cooperation with the Voice of America, she authored and released a TV documentary series on the Soviet dissidents and human rights activists who played a crucial role in ending the Cold War.

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PR 16-199
2016-11-14
ISSN 0731-3527