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Alfred-Maurice de Zayas

Alfred-Maurice de Zayas
Alfred de Zayas, Potsdam, 2005
United Nations Independent Expert on the Promotion of a Democratic and Equitable International Order
Assumed office
Personal details
Born (1947-05-31) 31 May 1947
Havana, Cuba
Nationality United States
Occupation Human rights expert, law professor and United Nations official

Alfred-Maurice de Zayas (born 31 May 1947[1] in Havana, Cuba; né Alfredo (de) Zayas), also known as Alfred de Zayas, is an American lawyer, writer, historian, a leading expert in the field of human rights and international law, a retired high-ranking United Nations official, a peace activist, and since 2012 the United Nations Independent Expert on the Promotion of a Democratic and Equitable International Order (also known as Special Rapporteur), appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council.[2][3] During its 27th session in September 2014 the Human Rights Council extended his mandate through 2018.[4] He is currently a professor of international law at the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations,[5] and formerly worked with the United Nations from 1981 to 2003 as a senior lawyer with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights,[6][7] Secretary of the Human Rights Committee,[8] and the Chief of Petitions. Zayas practised law in New York as an associate in the law firm Simpson Thacher & Bartlett from 1970 to 1974, specializing on corporate law, and is also a retired member of the Florida Bar.

Alfred de Zayas's scholarly work focuses on the judicial protection of peoples and minorities.[9] He holds a Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School and a doctorate in modern history from the University of Göttingen. Zayas has written and lectured extensively on human rights, including the jurisprudence of the United Nations Human Rights Committee,[10][11] the Armenian Genocide,[12][13][14][15][16] the Holocaust[17][18][19][20] the US-run detention centers at Guantanamo Bay,[21][22][23][24][25][26] ethnic cleansing in the former Yugoslavia,[27] the expulsion of Eastern European Germans after the Second World War,[28][29] the invasion of Cyprus by Turkey in 1974,[30][31][32] the rights of minorities,[33] the right to freedom of opinion and expression,[34] and the rights of indigenous peoples.[35] He is an advocate of "the right to homeland" as a universal human right,[36][37][38] of the human right to peace,[39][40] of the establishment of a United Nations Parliamentary Assembly and a World Court on Human Rights,[41] and has been active on behalf of the Iranian refugees in Camp Ashraf in Iraq.[42][43]

Since his retirement from the UN in 2003, Zayas has become a vocal critic of the Iraq War[44][45] indefinite detention[46] in Guantanamo, secret CIA prisons, nuclear pollution, and extreme poverty. He has chastised the United States, the United Kingdom, and Germany for their lack of intellectual honesty and their lip service to human rights.[47] A resident of Geneva, Switzerland, he was President of the Suisse Romand Centre of International PEN from 2006 to 2009, and in March 2013 was elected its president for a further term of three years.[48] From 1990 to 2005 he was president of the United Nations Society of Writers.


  • Biography 1
  • Scholarly work 2
    • War crimes in World War II and ethnic cleansing after the war 2.1
  • Civic activities 3
    • Activist for human rights and peace 3.1
    • United Nations Independent Expert 3.2
  • Literary endeavors 4
  • Prizes 5
  • Selected works 6
  • See also 7
  • References 8
  • External links 9


Zayas was born in [51]

During the course of his legal and academic career, Zayas has been a visiting professor of international law and of world history at a number of institutions, including the Graduate Institute of International Studies, Geneva, the DePaul University College of Law, Chicago, the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations, the Schiller International University, Leysin, the Académie Internationale de Droit Constitutionnel, Tunis, the University of Trier, the Santa Clara Law School, the Center for Applied Studies in International Negotiations (CASIN), Geneva, the Institut de Droits de l'Homme, Strasbourg, the Felix Ermacora Institute in Vienna, the Raoul Wallenberg Institute in Lund, Sweden, the Irish National University, Galway, and the University of Alcala de Henares, Madrid. He has been member of doctoral committees at the Institut Universitaire de Hautes Etudes Internationales, the universities of Amsterdam and Alcalá de Henares, the International Humanitarian Law Institute, San Remo,[52] and the Geneva School of Diplomacy.

Zayas regularly publishes op-ed articles and essays in German and Swiss newspapers, including the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung,[53] Die Welt, Das Parlament, Der Spiegel, Bayernkurier, Zeit Fragen, Le Temps[54] and the Tribune de Genève. He has made television appearances on round tables and panels for CNN, Russia Today,[55] WDR, WDR's Monitor, WDR's "Alte und neue Heimat", Phoenix, 3sat, ZDF, ZDF-Magazin, Südwestfunk/Baden-Baden, "Report", Aschaffenburger Gespräche, Bayerischer Rundfunk, Léman Bleu (Geneva) etc. He has been legal and historical consultant to numerous television documentaries in the US, Canada, the Netherlands and Germany, including the Discovery Channel film on the sinking of the refugee ship "Wilhelm Gustloff", and the Bayerischer Rundfunk documentary "Flucht und Vertreibung". He regularly gives radio interviews to Deutschlandfunk, Deutsche Welle, Radio Cité (Geneva), WBAI (New York), and other stations.[56][57]

Zayas is a Roman Catholic and resides with his Dutch wife in Geneva.[58]

According to press articles, he has been a registered Republican in the United States since 1968, when he was a Harvard student and an active member of the Harvard Republicans, but has voted for the Democratic party since 2004.[59]

Scholarly work

War crimes in World War II and ethnic cleansing after the war

Alfred de Zayas's scholarly work into the Wochenschau, Bundesarchiv and US-Army Signal Corps pictures, as well as paintings by survivors of the expulsion; it was widely visited, and commented on in the Chicago press.[70][71][72] The book is cited in scholarly publications and dissertations[73][74]

His second book, The Wehrmacht War Crimes Bureau was published in Germany by Universitas/Langen Müller. This describes some of the work of the Wehrmacht-Untersuchungsstelle, a special section of the legal department of the Oberkommando der Wehrmacht, which investigated Allied and German war crimes. Examples include the murder of Ukrainians in Lviv by the NKVD in 1941, the murder of Polish prisoners of war at Katyn in 1940, executions of German prisoners of war by French irregulars in 1944, and the sinking of the German hospital ship Tübingen by the British in 1944. Zayas was the first researcher to work with the 226 extantvolumes (about half of the total, the rest apparently having been burned in Langensalza, Germany, near the end of the war.[75]). They had been classified documents in the United States and had just been returned by the US National Archives to the German Bundesarchiv. The book was savagely attacked in the media of the Soviet Union and its satellites. Notwithstanding criticism from a few historians in Germany, these two books were well received in the academic community, are used in colleges and universities, and remain in print after thirty years.[76] The book on the Wehrmacht War Crimes Bureau was the product of a 4-year project financed by the Institute of International Law of the University of Göttingen and by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, Germany's foremost quasi-official academic foundation. The final report is available online.[77]

Civic activities

Zayas was co-President with Palais des Nations on "Denis de Rougement ou l'art de penser en avant les problèmes". On 12 May 1999 ASIG hosted a conference by Professor Peter Tschopp, Director of the Institut Universitaire de Hautes Etudes Internationales, on "La Suisse et l'ONU" at the Centre d'Accueil Genève Internationale. ASIG also hosted round tables at the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights at the Palais Wilson 2000–2002[78][79][80][81][82]

Activist for human rights and peace

Zayas is a member of numerous professional organizations and non-governmental organizations, including Amnesty International, Point Coeur,[83][84] the Geneva Club de la Presse, the Frankfurt, and is a member of the International Expert Panel for a European Solution in Cyprus (2004–2008).

In 2008–2010, he was president of

  • Alfred de Zayas – official website; contains many of his articles, lectures, poetry and translations
  • [16] Site of the Independent Expert on the Promotion of a Democratic and Equitable International Order

External links

  1. ^ Heimatrecht ist Menschenrecht, Journal Deutsche Umschau, May 2001, p.3
  2. ^ a b Human Rights Council concludes nineteenth session, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
  3. ^ Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations". Archived from the original on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-06. 
  6. ^ A. de Zayas "Human Rights, United Nations High Commissioner for" in H. Volger (ed.) Concise Encyclopedia of the United Nations, Kluwer, the Hague, 2002, pp. 217–223, favourably reviewed by Ruth Wedgwood in the American Journal of International Law, vol. 99, pp. 284–287 at 285;
  7. ^ A. de Zayas, "United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights" in Rudolf Bernhardt (ed.) Encyclopaedia of Public International Law, Vol. 4, 2000, Elsevier, Amsterdam, pp. 1129–1132
  8. ^
  9. ^ Yoram Dinstein, Israel Yearbook on Human Rights, Volume 23, 1993, p. 416
  10. ^ Jakob Th. Möller/Alfred de Zayas, The United Nations Human Rights Committee Case Law 1977-2008, N.P.Engel Publishers, Kehl/Strasbourg, 2009, ISBN 978-3-88357-144-7
  11. ^ "The Procedures and Case-Law of the United Nations Human Rights Committee" in Carlos Jiménez Piernas, The Legal Practice in International Law and European Community Law, Martinus Nijhoff, Leiden 2007
  12. ^ Conference Paper on Reparations at UCLA 23 October 2010
  13. ^
  14. ^ A de Zayas, "The Twentieth Century's First Genocide" in Steven Vardy and Hunt Tooley (eds.) Ethnic Cleansing in 20th Century Europe, Columbia University Press, New York 2003, S. 157–180
  15. ^ "El Genocidio contra los Armenios y la relevancia de la Convención para la prevención y la sanción del delito de genocidio" with a Prologue by the International Commission of Jurists, Buenos Aires, 2009, ISBN 978-950-895-277-6
  16. ^ The Genocide Against the Armenians 1915–1923 and the Relevance of the 1948 Genocide Convention, Haigazian University Press, Lebanon 2010
  17. ^ "Völkermord als Staatsgeheimnis, Vom Wissen über die Endlösung der Judenfrage im Dritten Reich". Olzog Verlag, Munich 2011.
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^ "The Status of Guantanamo Bay and the Status of the Detainees" (PDF). University of British Columbia Law Review 37: 277–342. 2004. 
  22. ^ "Guantánamo, la violation du droit en toute impunité". Tribune de Genève. 17–18: 4. January 2004. 
  23. ^ "Les Etats-Unis n'auront pas à répondre de Guantanamo". Tribune de Genève. 23 April 2004. 
  24. ^ "Guantanamo Naval Base" Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International law, Oxford online 2009,
  25. ^ "Wem gehört Guantanamo Bay", Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 29. Dezember 2003
  26. ^
  27. ^ "Ethnische Säuberungen und das Internationale Kriegsverbrechertribunal für das ehemalige Jugoslawien" in Archiv des Völkerrechts, Band 35 (1997) pp. 29–72, "Der Krieg im ehemaligen Jugoslawien aus völkerrechtlicher Sicht" in Tilman Zülch (ed.) Ethnische Säuberung, Luchterhand Verlag, 1999
  28. ^ A. de Zayas "Nemesis at Potsdam" Routledge 1977, 6th revised edition Picton 2003 ISBN, 0-89725-360-4, "A Terrible Revenge", Palgrave/Macmillan, New York 2006, 2nd revised edition, ISBN 978-1-4039-7308-5, "Vertreibung und Voelkerrecht" in the official catalogue of the exhibit "Flucht Vertreibung Integration", Haus der Geschichte der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, 3rd edition, Kerber Verlag 2006, ISBN 3-938025-58-1.
  29. ^ " Unzulässige Diskriminierung der deutschen Opfer" in FAZ online 28 February 2011 and Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 1 March 2011, p. 18.
  30. ^ "Self-determination. Turkish settlers and Cyprus referenda" in Andreas Auer (ed.) A Constitutional Convention for Cyprus, Wissenschaftlicher Verlag Berlin, 2009, ISBN 978-3-86573-423-5
  31. ^ "Turkey must apologise" Cyprus Weekly, 25 February 2011, p. 14
  32. ^ Zayas, Alfred de (2006). "The Annan Plan". Cyprus Yearbook of International Relations: 163–179. 
  33. ^ "Minority Rights in the New Millennium" in The Geneva Post Quarterly, May 2007, pp. 155–208
  34. ^
  35. ^ "The International Judicial Protection of Peoples and Minorities" in Catherine Brölmann "Peoples and Minorities in International Law", Martinus Nijhoff, Dordrecht 1993, pp.253–288
  36. ^ Zayas, Alfred-Maurice de (1975). "International Law and Mass Population Transfers". Harvard International Law Journal: 207–258. 
  37. ^ Zayas, Alfred-Maurice de (1996). "The Right to One's Homeland, Ethnic Cleansing and the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia". Criminal Law Journal. 
  38. ^ Heimatrecht ist Menschenrecht. Munich: Universitas. 2001. 
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^
  42. ^
  43. ^
  44. ^
  45. ^ Poets Against War
  46. ^ Human rights and indefinite detention
  47. ^ St. Galler Tagblatt 14 May 2004 "Verbrechen gegen den Frieden bestrafen" «Verbrechen gegen Frieden bestrafen»
  48. ^
  49. ^ Rafael Nieto y Cortadellas, Genealogías Habaneras, Vol. 2, p. 254
  50. ^ Los Expertos Internacionales en la Jurisprudencia de los Derechos Humanos, SIGLO XXI, Cuban Committee for Human Rights (CCPDH), 30 March 2000 (Online)
  51. ^ ""Deutsch-amerikanische Schulbuchrevision" Das Parlament, Aus Politik und Zeitgeschichte, 14. Juli 1979, pp. 37–47, "Deutsch-amerikanische Schulbuchrevision: 1962 bis 1967, und heute?" Lecture at the Rhein-Ruhr-Klub, Düsseldorf 29 March 1979, "Verzerrtes Deutschlandbild in Amerika" Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 1 August 1978, p. 2, "Hässliche Klischees in Schulbüchern" in Der Junge Beamte, November 1980, p. 14
  52. ^
  53. ^{2F7DA1A0-C0C2-AAB8-0FA2-A51139BF3716}&rub={E9236266-3C6E-4937-AB14-A07CB297CA09}
  54. ^ "La Kollektivschuld et les droits humains" 22 July 2010, p. 2
  55. ^ Video on YouTube
  56. ^ "Irak/USA/UNO: Feilschen, tricksen, erpressen – US-Diplomatie im Sicherheitsrat". Retrieved 2007-12-06. 
  57. ^ Lange, Gerhard. "Niemand hat Bush zum Weltpolizisten bestellt". Retrieved 2007-12-06. 
  58. ^ "Servez L'Eternnel avec Joie" Paroisse des Crêts, Grand Saconnex, Le Messager, July 2007, pp. 28–29
  59. ^ Commentary on the US Supreme Court Judgement on Guantanamo, in the German daily Die Welt, 1 June 2004, "Das Gericht hätte eine Frist setzen müssen". See also Harvard Law School Yearbook 1970, pp. 187, 194, 218
  60. ^ Zayas, Alfred-Maurice de: A Terrible Revenge: The Ethnic Cleansing of the Eastern European Germans 1944–1950, New York: St. Martin's Press, 1994
  61. ^ Kittel, Manfred (2007). Die Vertreibung der Vertriebenen. Munich: Oldenbourg Verlag. pp. 119, 158, 164. 
  62. ^ Ahonen, Pertti (2003). After the Expulsion. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 20–21. 
  63. ^ MacDonough, Giles (2007). After the Reich. London: John Murray Publishers. pp. 126, 556, 585 ff. There is a similar lack of documentation in English on events in Czechoslovakia. The best remains Alfred M. de Zayas's Nemesis at Potsdam (London 1979) 
  64. ^ Miskolc Journal of International Law
  65. ^ Zayas, Alfred-Maurice de. "International Law and Mass Population Transfers". Harvard International Law Journal 16: 207–258. 
  66. ^ Zayas, Alfred-Maurice de (1977). Nemesis at Potsdam. Routledge. (Book review in Die Zeit)
  67. ^ See Chapter by Dr. Raymond Lohne in Steven Vardy/Hunt Tooley (eds.) "Ethnic Cleansing in 20th Century Europe", Columbia University Press, New York, 2003
  68. ^,,2741634,00.html
  69. ^ Heinrich Windelen, "Foreword," in A. De Zayas, Anmerkungen zur Vertreibung der Deutschen aus dem Osten, W. Kohlhammer, 1993, ISBN 317012580X
  70. ^ Chicago Sun Times, Sunday, 28 November 1993
  71. ^ "Professor recalls post-WWII atrocities". Chicago Daily Law Bulletin: 3–4. 19 November 1993. 
  72. ^ DePaul University Reporter, Vol. VII, No. 5, January 234, 1994, p.4
  73. ^ Dr. Robert Bard, "Historical Memory of the Expulsion of Ethnic Germans in Europe 1944–1947" University of Hertfordshire, July 2009
  74. ^ See also symposium held on 19 July 2005 in Berlin, hosted by the Institut für Zeitgeschichte, with the participation of Dr. Guido Knopp (ZDF), Prof. Soutou (Sorbonne), Prof. Nichols (Oxford) and Alfred de Zayas, pp. 37 et seq.
  75. ^ Zayas, Alfred-Maurice de, The Wehrmacht War Crimes Bureau, 1939–1945, University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, NE, USA, 1989, pp. xiii–xiv.
  76. ^ "Fast ein Klassiker". 6 July 2006. Retrieved 2007-12-06. (book review in Die Zeit)
  77. ^
  78. ^ "Article". Tribune de Genève: 11. 4 March 1998. 
  79. ^ "Article". Tribune de Genève: 8. 12 February 2000. 
  80. ^ "Article". Tribune de Genève. 7 February 2003. 
  81. ^ "Article". UN Special: 28–29. April 2002. 
  82. ^ "International Geneva – Welcome Centre – International Circles". 
  83. ^ "UN Round table on human dignity at centre of human rights, moderated by Alfred de Zayas,". 
  84. ^ "Points-Cœur". 
  85. ^ "Millennium Solidarity Geneva Group – Millénium Solidarité Groupe de Genève". 
  86. ^ CONGO – Welcome
  87. ^ Geneva International Peace Research Institute.
  88. ^ and GCAP Global Call for Action against Poverty
  89. ^ Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP) — Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP)
  90. ^ CSP – Manifestations: 09 juin 2005 à 11 h.30
  91. ^ §
  92. ^ Civil Society Development Forum 2007
  93. ^ Diva International.“Life motivations in Geneva – A new international centre for life management skills and well-being”
  94. ^ 60 Ans Déclaration Universelle des Droits de l'Homme, UN Special December 2008, pp. 10–12
  95. ^
  96. ^
  97. ^
  98. ^
  99. ^
  100. ^
  101. ^
  102. ^ a b
  103. ^ Current Concerns, October 2007 No. 14, p. 8
  104. ^ "Abogan por la paz". Diario de las Americas. 21 September 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-06. 
  105. ^ "September 21 : International Day of Peace The Luarca Declaration and the Human Right to Peace". DIVA International. December 2007. 
  106. ^
  107. ^
  108. ^
  109. ^ Thematic mandates
  110. ^ United Nations Office at Geneva
  111. ^ At Human Rights Council, UN expert calls for uniform application of international law, United Nations
  112. ^ “Apply international law uniformly and not à la carte,” new UN independent expert urges world governments, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
  113. ^ Report of the Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, Alfred Maurice de Zayas, United Nations Human Rights Council, 3 August 2012
  114. ^ [9]
  115. ^ [10]
  116. ^ [11]
  117. ^ [12]
  118. ^ [13]
  119. ^ [14]
  120. ^ [15]
  121. ^ Zayas's translation of Hesse in Bernward Koch-Boehm's CD-recording with Erdenklang/da music, Nr. 61182. Deutsche Austrophon GmbH, D-49356 Diepholdz, 2008, "Montagnola. Dedicated to Hermann Hesse. Meditative Piano Improvisations"
  122. ^ Larenopfer, with a historical commentary, Red Hen Press, Los Angeles, 2005, second revised and enlarged edition 2008 with a preface by Professor Ralph Freedman. The new study by George C. Schoolfield "Young Rilke and his Time", Camden House 2009, refers favourably to Zayas's pioneering translation.
  123. ^ "Fondation Rainer Maria Rilke: Les conférences et lectures". Retrieved 2007-12-06. 
  124. ^ "Catalogue of the Geneva Bookfair, L'Agenda", p.59
  125. ^ "International PEN". Archived from the original on 11 December 2006. Retrieved 2007-12-06. 
  126. ^ ISSN 1020-6604, Diva International.Chez Alfred de Zayas – fête de la " Genève internationale "
  127. ^ "Le cercle de poètes qui libère les onusiens". Tribune de Genève. 12 February 2004. 
  128. ^ UN Special, April 1998, "Célébration des lettres: dixième soirée littéraire de la Socété des écrivains des Nations Unies"
  129. ^ U.N. Special, April 2006, pp. 38–39.
  130. ^
  131. ^
  132. ^
  133. ^
  134. ^
  135. ^ Die Welt, 5. Mai 1979, Seite 15.
  136. ^ Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 4 December 2001. The eulogy was read by the Berlin historian Alexander Demandt.
  137. ^ Stuttgarter Zeitung dated 11 December 2007, p. 22; the Eulogy was read by the Tübingen Professor and former Dean of the Law Faculty Thomas Oppermann
  138. ^ Geislinger Zeitung, 28 July 2008
  139. ^ CGE is a coalition of some fifty Canadian associations of Armenians, Bosnians, Croats, Cypriots, Germans, Greeks, Indigenous Peoples, Jews, Kosovars, Macedonians, Sinti, Roma, Serbs, Tamils, Ukrainians, and others. CGE aims at ensuring education on ethnic cleansing, genocide and crimes against humanity committed against a variety of victims.
  140. ^
  141. ^ Neue Welt, Toronto 6 April 2011, page 6.


See also

  • editor of the United Nations series "Human Rights Committee. Selected Decisions under the Optional Protocol" CCPR/C/OP/1, CCPR/C/OP/2, etc.
  • Poetry in English, French, Spanish, German and Russian published in various literary journals and newspapers including "Esoteric" in 2003, 2004 and 2005 (literary journal of the University of British Columbia), in "Ex Tempore" (literary journal of the United Nations Society of Writers), in les Pages Litteraires (literary journal of P.E.N. International, Centre Suisse romand), in the U.N. Special, Reflections (United Nations Staff Council, New York), in "Paloma", publication of the Geneva Salève Society, etc.


  • 4 entries in Dinah Shelton (ed.) Encyclopedia of Genocide. Macmillan Reference, 2005, "Aggression", "Ismael Enver", "Nelson Mandela", "Raoul Wallenberg".
  • 6 entries in David Forsythe, Encyclopedia of Human Rights (Oxford 2009): P.E.N. International and Human Rights, Jose Ayala Lasso, Aryeh Nyer, Kenneth Roth, Simon Wiesenthal and Bertrand Ramcharan, ISBN 978-0-19-533402-9.
  • 18 entries in the Encyclopaedia of Public International Law, edited by Rudolf Bernhardt, Amsterdam: Elsevier, Vol. 1–5, 1992–2003, including "United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights", "Combatants", "Spanish Civil War", "Population Expulsion", "Repatriation", "Open Towns", "Curzon Line", "United States Dependent Territories", "European Recovery Program", etc.
  • "Freedom of Opinion and Freedom of Expression" (together with Aurea Rolda) in the Netherlands International Law Review vol. LIX, 2012, pp. 425–455
  • "Die amerikanische Besetzung Guantánamos", Institut für Rechtspolitik an der Universität Trier, Rechtspolitisches Forum Nr. 28, 2005, ISSN 1616-8828.
  • "Ethnic Cleansing: Applicable Norms, Emerging Jurisprudence, Implementable Remedies" in John Carey (ed.) International Humanitarian Law: Origins, New York: Transnational Press, 2003, pp. 283–307.
  • "The Follow-up Procedure of the UN Human Rights Committee" in International Commission of Jurists Review, no. 47, 1991.
  • "The Illegal Implantation of Turkish Settlers in Occupied Northern Cyprus" in Gilbert Gornig (ed.), Iustitia et Pax, Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, 2008, pp. 721–731.
  • "The Istanbul Pogrom of 6–7 September 1955 in the Light of International Law" in Genocide Studies and Prevention, vol. 2, no. 2 (August 2007) pp. 137–155.
  • "Karl Ernst Smidt" in Biographisches Lexikon für Ostfriesland, Aurich, 2007.
  • "Der Krieg im ehemaligen Yugoslawien aus völkerrechtlicher Sicht" in Tilman Zülch (ed.) "Ethnische Säuberung-Völkermord", Hamburg: Luchterhand, 1993.
  • "Minority Rights in the New Millennium" in The Geneva Post Quarterly, May 2007, pp. 155–208.
  • "Normes morales et normes juridiques. Concurrence ou conciliation" in Anne Sophie Millet-Devalle (ed.), Religions et Droit International Humanitaire, Paris: Editions Pedone, 2007, pp. 81–87.
  • "Der Nürnberger Prozess" in Alexander Demandt "Macht und Recht", Munich: C.H.Beck, 1996.
  • "The potential for US ratification and enforcement of the Covenants on Civil and Political Rights and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights". Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law, vol. 20, 1990. pp. 299–310.
  • "The Procedures and Case-Law of the United Nations Human Rights Committee" in Carlos Jiménez Piernas, The Legal Practice in International Law and European Community Law, Leiden: Martinus Nijhoff, 2007.
  • "The Right to One's Homeland, Ethnic Cleansing and the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia", Criminal Law Forum, 1995, pp. 257–314.
  • "The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights" in Helmut Volger (ed.) Concise Encyclopaedia of the United Nations, The Hague: Kluwer, 2002, 2nd revised edition 2009.

Articles and chapters

  • "50 Theses on the Expulsion of the Germans from Central and Eastern Europe", Verlag Inspiration: London and Berlin, 2012. ISBN 978-3-9812110-4-7.
  • Völkermord als Staatsgeheimnis, Olzog Verlag, München, 2011. ISBN 978-3-7892-8329-1.
  • The Genocide against the Armenians and the relevance of the 1948 Genocide Convention, Beirut, Lebanon: Haigazian University Press, 2010. ISBN 978-9953-475-15-8.
  • The United Nations Human Rights Committee Case Law 1977-2008 (together with Jakob Th. Möller), N.P.Engel Publishers, Kehl/Strasbourg, 2009, ISBN 978-3-88357-144-7.
  • 50 Thesen zur Vertreibung London/Berlin: Verlag Inspiration, 2008. ISBN 978-3-9812110-0-9.
  • Rainer Maria Rilke. Die Larenopfer Bilingual English-German edition with commentary. Los Angeles: Red Hen Press, 2005. ISBN 1-59709-010-7; second revised edition with a preface by Ralph Freedman, 2008.
  • International Human Rights Monitoring Mechanisms (with Gudmundur Alfredsson and Bertrand Ramcharan). The Hague: Kluwer, 2001. ISBN 90-411-1445-9. New revised edition, Brill 2009, ISBN 978-90-04-16236-5.
  • Heimatrecht ist MenschenrechtUniversitas Verlag, 2001. ISBN 3-8004-1416-3
  • Human Rights in the Administration of Criminal Justice (with Cherif Bassiouni), New York, Transnational Press: 1994. ISBN 0-941320-87-1
  • Nemesis at Potsdam: The Expulsion of the Germans from the East. 7th ed. Rockland, Maine: Picton Press, 2003. ISBN 0-89725-360-4. 14. revised German edition Die Nemesis von Potsdam, Herbig, Munich 2005.
  • A Terrible Revenge: The Ethnic Cleansing of the East European Germans. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1994, ISBN 1-4039-7308-3; second revised edition, Palgrave/Macmillan, New York 2006.
  • The Wehrmacht War Crimes Bureau, 1939-1945 (with Walter Rabus). Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1989, ISBN 0-8032-9908-7. New revised edition with Picton Press, Rockland, Maine, ISBN 0-89725-421-X. German edition: Die Wehrmacht Untersuchungsstelle, 7th revised and enlarged edition Universitas/Langen Müller, Munich 2001; 8th revised and enlarged edition Lindenbaum Verlag, 2012, ISBN 978-3-938176-39-9.
  • Nemesis at Potsdam – The Anglo-Americans and the Expulsion of the Germans – Background, Execution and Consequences. Routledge and Kegan Paul (1979), ISBN 978-0897253604


Selected works

[141][140][139] the Human Rights Award of the Danube Swabian Society of the United States and Canada in 1985, the VDA-Kulturpreis in Weimar in 1996, the "Plakete für Verdienste für das Selbstbestimmungsrecht" in Berlin in 1997, the "Humanitas Ring" in Frankfurt a.M. in 1998, the "Dr. Walter-Eckhardt-Ehrengabe für Zeitgeschichtsforschung" ("Dr. Walter Eckhardt Award for Contemporary History") from [135] Zayas received the "Ehrengabe zum Georg Dehio Preis" in Esslingen in 1980,


He has been a member of the Société Genevoise des Ecrivains since 2008 and a member of the Société Valaisanne des Ecrivains since 2013.

Zayas served for fifteen years as president of the United Nations Society of Writers, Geneva. He was the founder of the UN literary review Ex Tempore, which has published 25 issues.[126][127][128][129] In October 2011 he was reelected editor-in-chief of Ex Tempore. On 21 January 2011 the 15th annual Ex Tempore salon was held in Geneva.[130][131][132] In honour of the Whistler Olympics Zayas read out his poem "Skiing", also published in the February 2010 UN Special.[133] and in the Spring 2010 issue of the UBC literary Journal "Esoteric". On 14 October 2014 the UN Library in Geneva held celebrated the 25th anniversary of the United Nations Society of Writers with a special event devoted to literature and peace.[134]

He has also published in the literary journal of the PEN Club Suisse Romande "L'Escarpe" (renamed 2008 "Pages Littéraires) in 2007 and 2008. A member of International PEN since 1989, he was Secretary-General of the Centre Swiss Romande of PEN PEN Club in 2002–06, and its president 2006–2010; since then he remains a member of the Centre's executive committee. Zayas was coordinator of the three Swiss PEN Centres Switzerland since 2008–10.[125]

As a member of the International Rainer Maria Rilke Society of Sierre, Switzerland, he published the first English-language translation of Rilke's "Larenopfer", ninety poems dedicated to Rilke's homeland of Bohemia and his home city of Prague[122] With this book, Zayas opened a new facet of Rilke research: Rilke as Heimatdichter, or poet of the homeland, poète du terroir – spanning Rilke's early poetry characterized by enthusiasm for the beauties and the history of his homeland through Rilke's final poetic testament – more than 400 poems in French, dedicated to the Valais in Switzerland (Quatrains Valaisains, Roses, Fenêtres, Vergers), Rilke's "Wahlheimat", where he spent the last years of his life at the Château de Muzot in Sierre and where he is buried in nearby Raron. Hitherto, Rilke had been understood primarily as a metaphyscial poet, as a poet's poet, but had not been seen as a homeland poet. Zayas has lectured and published on Rilke's search for a sense of belonging and his grateful attachment to a landscape and to the real people who live there.[123] Zayas has also lectured on Rilke in Austria, Germany, Switzerland and Canada. On 2 May 2011 he delivered a lecture at the Salon du Livre de Genève (Geneva bookfair) on "Rilke, poète de la Heimat"[124]

Apart from his scholarly work in the fields of history and law, Zayas has published poetry in English, French, German, Spanish, and Dutch, has translated the poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke into English, French, and Spanish, and has translated works by Joseph von Eichendorff and Hermann Hesse into English.[121]

Literary endeavors

During his mandate, Alfred de Zayas has made important remarks related to contemporary world issues, welcoming the Arms Trade Treaty and urging States to regulate not only trade but also production of arms.[115] For the 2013 World Water Day, he stated that: “With the growth of the world population, the global climate change and the need for a greater healthy environment, access to water resources has become a crucial condition for the realization of an equitable international order, where the needs of the peoples are effectively addressed.".[116] Furthermore, for the 2013 International Earth Day, he observed: “When we pollute the Earth and waste resources, we violate the rights of future generations and undermine an international order based on democratic participation and equitable sharing of the planet’s wealth.”He argues that a change of paradigm is necessary to achieve a just international order: “This vision can be achieved by respecting the United Nations Charter as the World Constitution, by applying international law uniformly and not à la carte, An international democratic order is one where all peoples have the opportunity to participate in global decision-making. We must build on the principles of self-determination, sovereignty, and respect for national identities and universal human dignity."He proposed reforms in the international arena, including in the UN Security Council and the General Assembly, while also stressing that the riches of the planet must be equally shared and not controlled by a few countries or cartels. "Fair trade is possible, as are transfer of knowledge and technical cooperation based on mutual benefit," pointing to the international financial crisis as an indicator of inequality in the international order, and calling for transparency and accountability in the markets, emphasizing that markets cannot be the "private playground of financial bankers", and instead need to understand their role as "a public responsibility."[117] On 27 October he presented his third report to the General Assembly (A/69/272)[118][119] In the press release issued on 28 October he stated: "The realization of the right of self-determination is essential to maintaining local, regional and international peace and must be seen as an important conflict-prevention strategy" – [120]

In January 2008, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights placed his name on the public list of candidates for Special Procedures of the UN Human Rights Council [107] In 2011, the office of United Nations Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order was established by Human Rights Council resolution 18/6, sponsored by the government of Cuba,[108][109] and in 2012, Alfred de Zayas was elected as the Independent Expert by the Human Rights Council, after being nominated by the President of the council, Laura Dupuy.[2][110] He presented his first report to the UN Human Rights Council at its 21st session in September 2012, calling for uniform application of international law.[111][112][113] On 2 November 2012 he presented his interim report to the UN General Assembly in New York. Doc. A/67/277. On 10 September 2013 he presented his second report to the Human Rights Council A/HRC/24/38 and on 10 September 2014 his third report A/HRC/27/51.[114] On 28 October 2013 he presented his second report to the General Assembly.

United Nations Independent Expert

In June 2009 Zayas published, together with Justice Jakob Th. Möller of Iceland, a handbook called "The Case-Law of the United Nations Human Rights Committee 1977–2008". The first Chairperson of the Committee, Andreas Mavrommatis, wrote the preface and the former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Bertrand Ramcharan, reviewed it in the UN Special of June 2009, pp. 18–19: "It is staggering how much the Human Rights Committee has influenced the human rights jurisprudence of the world, as is striking from reading this exceedingly important book.... From the outset of its work in 1977 there have been two Secretariat pioneers in developing the case law of the Committee when it considers petitions from individuals claiming violations of their rights: Jakob Möller (Iceland) and Alfred de Zayas (USA). Möller was the first Chief of the Petitions branch of what is today the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and de Zayas was his colleague, who eventually succeeded him as Chief. ...Every lawyer, every judge, every public-spirited citizen will want to consult this fascinating book, because it tells us what is legally right and legally wrong, how to judge our governments, our societies, our United Nations and ourselves." Zayas is also co-author and co-editor with Gudmundur Alfredsson and Bertrand Ramcharan of "International Human Rights Monitoring Mechanisms", Brill, The Hague, 2009.

While a staff member at the UN, Zayas was the founder and editor of the series "Selected Decisions of the Human Rights Committee under the Optional Protocol." He is a regular participant in panels and round tables at the United Nations, where he represents the International Society for Human Rights. During the 4th–18th sessions of the Human Rights Council, he has participated in panels on various issues including the right to development, extreme poverty, the [102][103][104][105] He is a consultant with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva and a member of the board of directors of Project 2048 at the University of Berkeley, which aims at a new human rights convention with effective implementation machinery to promote and protect all human rights, including the "new enabling rights" such as the right to peace, the right to truth, the right to a homeland.[106] On 18 August 2011 Bruna Molina and Zayas founded the Geneva Branch of 2048 as an association under Swiss law, the International Bill of Rights Association.

He endorsed the Declaration of Santiago de Compostela of 10 December 2010 and also participated in relevant side-events of the Human Rights Council in Geneva in March, June and September 2011. [101] expert meeting in Bilbao, Spain, as a member of the editorial committee of the Declaracion de Bilbao on the Human Right to Peace, for which he served as English-language Rapporteur, and reported on the results of the workshop at a UN Panel in Geneva in March 2010.UNESCO. On 22–25 February 2010 he participated at a Human Rights Council Resolution 11/4 established under [100] On 15–16 December 2009 he participated as an expert in the UN workshop on the human right to peace[99] He contributed to a book on the Human Right to Peace and presented it at a symposium at the University of California at Berkeley in November 2009.[98] including with Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, Professor Jean Ziegler, with the Chairman of the Human Rights Council, Ambassador Luis de Alba, and with the President of the General Assembly Miguel d'Escoto. He is an advocate of the human right to peace and a signatory of the "Luarca Declaration on the Human Right to Peace".[97] He has represented AEDIDH, the International P.E.N., and the International Society for Human Rights at round tables at the United Nations in Geneva.[96][95] (AEDIDH), which in October 2006 produced the "Luarca Declaration on the Human Right to Peace".Asociación Española para el Desarrollo del Derecho Internacional de los Derechos Humanos He is a member of the [94][93][92][91][90][89][88] CETIM -Centre Europe- Tier Monde[87] Millennium Solidarity has synergies with the Geneva Institute for Peace,[86] He has participated on podium discussions at the UN and chaired an expert panel on peace, disarmament, and poverty at the Civil Society Development Forum on 28 June 2007 in Geneva.[85]

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