John Dugard

John Dugard

John Dugard (born in 1936 in Fort Beaufort) is a South African professor of international law. He has served as Judge ad hoc on the International Court of Justice and as a Special Rapporteur for both the former United Nations Commission on Human Rights and the International Law Commission. His main academic specializations are in Roman-Dutch law, public international law, jurisprudence, human rights, criminal procedure and international criminal law. He has written extensively on South African apartheid.


John Dugard earned his BA and LLB degrees at Stellenbosch University (South Africa) and his LL.D. degree from Cambridge University in 1980.



From 1975-1977, Dugard was the Dean and a Professor of Law at the University of Witwatersrand (Johannesburg, South Africa). From 1978-1990, he was the Director of the University of Witwatersrand's [ Centre for Applied Legal Studies] , "a research centre committed to the promotion of Human Rights in South Africa".

He has held visiting professorships at Princeton University, Duke University, UC Berkeley and University of Pennsylvania, and University of New South Wales (Australia).

He is a member of the Institut de Droit International.

Dugard was Director of the [ Lauterpacht Centre for International Law] at the University of Cambridge from 1995-1997.

In 1998, he was appointed as Chair in Public International Law at Leiden University in the Netherlands and as Director of the advanced LLM programme in Public International Law.

International Law

He has, since 1997, served as a member of the International Law Commission of the United Nations. In 2000, he became its Special Rapporteur on Diplomatic Protection.

In 2000, he served as Judge ad hoc in the cases concerning Armed Activities on the Territory of the Congo (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Burundi) (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Uganda) and (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Rwanda) at the International Court of Justice.

United Nations

Following the recurrence of the Palestinean intifada in late 2000, John Dugard was appointed as Chairman of a UN Commission on Human Rights inquiry commission on the situation of human rights there. In 2001, he was appointed as Special Rapporteur to the Commission and has submitted annual reports and recommendations to the UN concerning the situation of international human rights and humanitarian law.

He now reports to the UN Human Rights Council as Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Israeli-Palestinian Disputed territories. In its first special session in July 2006, the nascent Human Rights Council decided to dispatch an urgent fact-finding mission headed by Dugard to report on the situation there. On 26 September 2006, Dugard reported that the "standards of human rights in the Palestinian territories have fallen to intolerable new levels" [BBC News Online. 2006. UN says Gaza crisis 'intolerable'. September 26. Available from:] .

In his report to the 4th session of the Human Rights Council, Dugard stated, "Discrimination against Palestinians occurs in many fields. Moreover, the 1973 International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid appears to be violated by many practices, particularly those denying freedom of movement to Palestinians." []

Dugard's 2007 Report

In a report released in February 2007, Dugard ”announced that Israel's policies resemble those of apartheid." cite web
title=UN envoy hits Israel 'apartheid'
publisher=BBC News
] "It is difficult to resist the conclusion that many of Israel's laws and practices violate the 1966 Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Racial Discrimination," says the report.

Referring to Israel's actions in the occupied West Bank, he wrote, "Can it seriously be denied that the purpose [...] is to establish and maintain domination by one racial group (Jews) over another racial group (Palestinians) and systematically oppressing them? Israel denies that this is its intention or purpose. But such an intention or purpose may be inferred from the actions described in this report." [McCarthy, Rory. [,,2019547,00.html "Occupied Gaza like apartheid South Africa, says UN report"] , "The Guardian", February 23, 2007.] [ John Dugard, PDFlink|" [ Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rightsin the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967] "|243 KiB (Advance Edited Version), United Nations Human Rights Council, 29 January 2007.]

Dugard was appointed in 2001 as an unpaid expert by the now-defunct UN Human Rights Commission to investigate only violations by the Israeli side, prompting Israel and the U.S. to dismiss his reports as one-sided. Israel refused to allow him to conduct a UN-mandated fact-finding mission on its Gaza offensive in 2006. []


John Dugard has honorary doctorates of law from the University of Cape Town, University of Natal, University of Port Elizabeth, University of Pretoria and the University of the Witwatersrand.

elected Bibliography


* "International Law: A South African Perspective" 3rd Edition (2006) ISBN 0-7021-7121-2
* "The Last Years of Apartheid: Civil Liberties in South Africa", with Nicholas Haysom, Gilbert Marcus (1992) ISBN 0871241455
* "Recognition and the United Nations" (1987) ISBN 0-521-46322-X
* "Human Rights and the South African Legal Order" (1978) ISBN 0-691-09236-2
* "The South West Africa/Namibia Dispute" (1973) ISBN 0-520-01886-9

Legal Briefings

* "South West Africa and the International Court;: Two viewpoints on the 1971 advisory opinion" (1973) ISBN B0006CGXB2
* "Apartheid and human rights in South Africa: Techniques of implementation" (1974) ISBN B0006WUI1I
* "The denationalization of Black South Africans in pursuance of apartheid: A question for the International Court of Justice?" (1984) ISBN 0-85494-832-5


* "The judicial process, positivism and civil liberty" (1971) ISBN B0006COV9I
* "Independent homelands: Failure of a fiction : 1979 presidential address" (1979) ISBN B0006E8KNO
* "A national strategy for 1980: Presidential address, 1980" (1980 ISBN 0-86982-183-0


* "International Criminal Law and Procedure", with Christine Van Den Wyngaert (1996) ISBN 1-85521-835-6
* "Documents on International Law: Handbook for Law Students and Constitutional Lawyers", with Neville Botha, Patric M. Mtshaulana (1996) ISBN 0702135321


* [ Faculty Bio for John Dugard] , University of Leiden, accessed June 27 2006.

External links

* [ Statement by John Dugard on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied by Israel since 1967] , Report to the 59th Session of the United Nations General Assembly, October 28 2004, accessed June 27 2006.
* [ Question of the Violation of Human Rights in the Occupied Arab Territories, Including Palestine] , Report to the Commission on Human Rights, John Dugard, 3 March 2005, accessed June 27 2006.
* [ ADL to UN: Dismiss Official with Overt Bias Against Israel] , Anti-Defamation League, accessed June 27 2006.
* [ John Dugard Interview Transcript on Palestinian Occupied Territories Human Rights report and related controversy] , accessed June 27 2006.
* [ Terrorism and Human Rights - an International Law Perspective] , John Dugard, Rhodes University Centenary Lecture Series, March 23 2003, accessed August 26 2006
* [ Interview with John Dugard about Palestinian Occupied Territories] , Victor Kattan, Media Monitors.Net, September 22 2004, accessed August 26 2006
* [ Palestine: Peace not Apartheid] , John Dugard, December 2006.

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