Students Staff

25 January 2017

Tributes for Professor Sir Nigel Rodley

Filed under: Latest news, People pages — Communications Office @ 3:14 pm
Professor Sir Nigel Rodley

Professor Sir Nigel Rodley

It is with great sadness that we have learnt of the death of our colleague Professor Sir Nigel Rodley.

Dr Clara Sandoval, Acting Director of the Human Rights Centre, has paid tribute: “Today is a very sad day. The Human Rights movement has lost one of its founding fathers. The School of Law and the Human Rights Centre have lost a brilliant and unpretentious colleague, an inspiring and generous human being and a wonderful mentor and friend.

“He was the living heart of the Human Rights Centre at Essex; he will always be remembered for his brilliant legal mind, for his admirable professionalism, for talking truth to power and for his integrity. It is comforting to know that his legacy will endure in the many people he taught and worked with. He was a dear friend and mentor who taught me more than I can say. We will miss him dearly.”

Vice-Chancellor Professor Anthony Forster said: “Professor Sir Nigel Rodley was a global champion of human rights – writing influential books on international human rights law while also undertaking incredibly important work on behalf of the United Nations. He had a huge impact on the University over the past 25 years and was absolutely central to establishing Essex as a world-leading centre for human rights. He was an inspiration to many, many students and colleagues. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time.”

Professor Lorna Fox O’Mahony, Executive Dean (Humanities), added:Professor Sir Nigel Rodley was a giant in his field, globally recognised as a tireless campaigner for human rights and widely respected for his intellectual leadership. He will be warmly remembered for his kindness. Colleagues and students across the University are deeply saddened by his loss.”

Sir Nigel joined Essex in 1990 as Reader in Law. From 1993 to 2001 he served as the first United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture. From 2001 to October 2016 he served on the United Nations Human Rights Committee and in 1998 he was knighted for his services to human rights.

A full tribute will be published on our website in due course.

If you would like to leave your own tribute please leave your thoughts in the comment box below. Please note comments will be moderated so there may be a delay in publication.

127 responses to “Tributes for Professor Sir Nigel Rodley”

  1. It’s a year from now that I’ve realized about Sir Nigel Rodley past away and in his first anniversary I still keep in my memories his classes and profound insights that touched my life but above all the discernment I was able to make thanks to him… To become a human rights defender.
    The last time I saw him was at Yale University while I was lecturing human rights as a Visiting Professor. I’m still giving my lecture and still inspired by him. I’m running as well a Migrant and Refugee Shelter and we are about to build a Human Rights Center dedicated to him, hopefully soon!

  2. […] Professor Rodley’s life and dedication to the cause of human rights should serve as an inspiration to us all to ensure that there is, in his words, ‘no safe haven for torturers’.  To find out more about the life of Professor Sir Nigel Rodley, please see the pieces published about him on the Guardian,Amnesty International, and the BBC. To leave a tribute, please follow this link. […]

  3. […]   The first months of 2017 have been extremely tough for the human rights community. The use of torture as a legitimate form of interrogation in the war against terror is being revisited by the world’s most powerful country.  And sadly, the man who fought tirelessly to bring to an end the use of torture and other forms of cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, Professor Sir Nigel Rodley, passed away on 25th January 2017.   Professor Rodley was a world renowned academic, professor, international lawyer and United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (serving from 1993-2001).  He was also incredibly humble and kind, not wishing his students or colleagues to refer to him as ‘Sir’ or indeed, ‘the authority on international law’, despite his encyclopedia knowledge of the subject.   As Amnesty International’s legal adviser, his passion and tireless campaign to end torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment led to the Declaration on the Protection of All Persons from Being Subjected to Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.  This was adopted by the UN General Assembly in December 1975 and then led to the development of the Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT) in 1987.  This work was recognized in his appointment as Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment in 1993.    Following on from his work as Special Rapporteur, he served on the UN Human Rights Committee from 2001-2016.  At the same time, he continued to teach students at the University of Essex, where he co-founded the internationally renowned Human Rights Center in 1990, where he is already greatly missed.   Professor Rodley’s life and dedication to the cause of human rights should serve as an inspiration to us all to ensure that there is, in his words, ‘no safe haven for torturers’.  To find out more about the life of Professor Sir Nigel Rodley, please see the pieces published about him on the Guardian, Amnesty International, and the BBC. To leave a tribute, please follow this link.  […]

  4. Muhammad Zubair says:

    I was shocked to hear about the death of Sir Nigel. He was a great lecturer and role model for us working in the human rights community

  5. Graham says:

    Nigel taught me and supervised my work. He also encouraged and enthused. I was later fortunate to work with him in the field.

    I have enormous respect and admiration for a man who so selflessly dedicated his life’s work to tackling serious human rights violations, for the betterment of others and who was instrumental in ensuring wrong doers can be held to account.

    His passing now leaves a huge void as it seems the world needs his influence more than ever. But his passing also leaves a massive positive legacy. I respected Nigel as a true gentle giant.

  6. Alan Msisa says:

    This is a sad loss to the University of Essex human rights centre. It is because of such dedicated role models that we aspire to make the world a better place for everyone. He clearly left a big mark on the human rights movement. May his soul rest in peace.

  7. Tatiana Maya says:

    It is sad when someone dies, but it is great when someone has lived such an incredible life to help others. Thank you Professor Nigel for your life, for your legacy. It was a great honor to have been your student.

  8. It is with real sadness that I learnt of the death of Nigel. He was an amazing person and so very knowledgeable about human rights. He worked tirelessly for justice and was always interested in the human rights situation in Colombia. He had very innovative ideas about how to effectively further the cause of human rights. He was an inspiration to all of us who work in this field. His legacy will live on.

  9. Stefanie Grant says:

    I remember when Nigel took up his job at Amnesty in 1973. Researchers were happy to meet him, but puzzled about what he would actually do. There had been lawyers before, starting with Peter Benenson, but the International Secretariat had never had anyone who worked as a lawyer. We relied on facts, and moral principle, and sometimes mentioned the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. But we didn’t talk about international law because there was so little of it. By the time Nigel left, 17 years later, there had been a sea change. Human rights work had been given a legal backbone – and arsenal. At the centre was the UN Declaration on Torture and then the Convention against Torture. Nigel played a very important role in both, campaigning for the international human rights law which he would go on to teach, and to enforce – at Essex, as the UN’s Special Rapporteur on Torture, and through the Human Rights Committee. This was a unique moment of opportunity, and Nigel took it, with enormous personal commitment, his legal and diplomatic skills – and a willingness to sit through long UN meetings.

    I saw Nigel most recently last summer. We talked about a General Comment he was drafting for the Human Rights Committee. I asked if it could break new ground by including migrant and refugee deaths at sea. His response was immediate, warm and positive – the very same qualities he brought to the Campaign against Torture 40 years earlier, sitting in Amnesty’s ramshackle offices in Turnagain Lane.

    His death is a great loss.

    Stefanie Grant

  10. Susan Stallabrass says:

    A giant of a human rights advocate, a searing intellect, an inspirational man. I met Sir Nigel only once and was captivated by his commitment to support students with generosity of spirit and answer even their most timid of questions with kindness and wit. A sad loss to the world at this time when we need such clarity of thought. My condolences to family and friends.

  11. Prof. Malcolm Shaw QC says:

    I was truly saddened to hear of Nigel’s passing. A great scholar, wonderful communicator, determined human rights advocate and a really nice man, good to be around. We all learned from him – and enjoyed his company.

    I am proud that I was able to initiate the contact between Nigel and Essex University. It was the very early 1980s and I had just started the LLM in Human Rights and created the Human Rights Centre. Due to shortages of teaching resources, I arranged for students to intern in human rights organisations in London. This included, of course, Amnesty International, where Nigel was the innovative legal officer. I also invited him to speak to the students on a number of occasions. He had been instrumental in the drafting of the Convention against Torture and his words of advice to the students were highly valued. I am glad that (after I had moved on) Nigel moved to Essex University and added so much to the Centre.
    We will all miss him terribly.

    Malcolm Shaw

  12. Julian Lehmann says:

    “Sir Nigel” was the kind the of professor you wish for: incredibly knowledgeable, yet humble and approachable. A dedicated human rights lawyer with a strong understanding of the politics involved. At a time when human rights standards are being increasingly eroded, his strategic advise will be sorely missed. My condolences to his family, who have lost such a lovable person.

  13. Enricah A. Dulo (LLM 2009) says:

    I feel honoured to have been one of your students at Essex. Your death came as a shock to many of us. No one ever wants to imagine that the people in their circle will one day die. Thank you for touching so many lives. Thank you for the great work you did on prohibition of Torture and ill treatment. I know you’re gone, but your legacy will live forever. My condolences to Lynn.

  14. Nadeem Fazil Ayaz says:

    Sad to know that Sir Nigel Rodley is no more. He was among the rare people who combined academic excellence and hands on human rights work. Personally for me Sir Nigel and Kevin Boyle were the two people for whom I chose to join Essex. Both are now gone.

  15. Martin Scheinin says:

    We have suffered a great loss when Nigel left us. I learned to know him as a my senior, both as academic and as UN human rights expert. The alphabet then placed us next to each other on the Human Rights Committee for full four years. It was a wonderful experience. Most of the time we agreed with each other, and often had the same arguments. But not always, and those are the moments that represent the Nigel whom I will remember. How he listened carefully, and how he articulated his own position and legal argument. A person of great intellect and integrity.

  16. Chantal Hudson says:

    It is with much sadness that I hear of the passing of a Prof with such humility, such generosity, who inspired me greatly as a student. My deepest condolences to his family, his colleagues and students.

  17. Jasur says:

    Nigel… Even put aside human rights, you deserved our respect and love in this world. I do not know how did you like your life… Anyway, it was just a life… May Allah bless you in your ethernal journey…

  18. Justice Nwobike says:

    As a former student of Sir Nigel at the Human Rights Centre, I am sad to learn of his demise. Professor Rodley was an outstanding teacher and great humanitarian. May his gentle Soul Rest in Peace.

  19. Prof bob Watt says:

    Greatly saddened to hear of your untimely death, Nigel. You were not an easy colleague, but you were generous, thoughtful, and usually right. Slightly scary- but incredibly kind and warm, and always ready to accept that once or twice you had gone too far. I remember you buying flowers for a colleague who caught the rough edge of your tongue. That showed your strength as a person- you always stood up personally and professionally for what was right and could not bear humbug. A truly BIG )HU)MAN
    The world is so much poorer for your passing. Condolences to Lyn.
    Rest in Peace
    bob

  20. Alexandra Wisotsky says:

    What a tremendous loss to the community. I will always be grateful for the opportunity to study and work with Professor Rodley while I was at Essex.

  21. Iain Byrne says:

    Together with Kevin Boyle, another giant of the Human Rights Centre whose loss we also still feel, Nigel was a huge influence for so many of us. In my case from being a rigorous but supportive supervisor of my dissertation at Essex in the 90s to the two organisations where I have worked for the last 15 years – INTERIGHTS which he helped to establish and Amnesty of course. As many others have said he wore his countless achievements lightly and continued until the end of his life to offer inspiration and guidance to the human rights movement. His loss is particularly felt at this critical time but I also know that he would want his legacy not to be lengthy tributes and memorials, important and necessary although they are, but practical action in upholding the human rights law that he fought for so much of his life to make reality.

  22. Tofig Musayev (LL.M 2003-04) says:

    I am writing to convey my deepest condolences in connection with the passing of the Chair of the Human Rights Centre, Professor Sir Nigel Rodley. He was an exceptional person and great professional. He will be missed by all of us. Together with the family of Professor Rodley, the Law School and the Human Rights Centre, all his colleagues and students, I mourn over this heavy loss and share your sorrow.

  23. Sonia Zdorovtzoff says:

    Like most of my fellow Essex alumni, I was really sadden by the recent demise of Sir Nigel: he was an inspiration for us all, as a lawyer and as a human being. I hope generations to come will remember him as much and as fondly as we will! My heart goes out to his wife, his relatives and to anyone who works or has worked at the Human Rights Centre, with a special thought for Dr. Clara Sandoval.

  24. Olivia Rope says:

    I was privileged to have met and worked with Nigel in recent years in my job at Penal Reform International. I will remember Nigel’s polite and humble way he interacted with everyone… whether they were “VIP” or the “regular Joe.” That was his way, and he will be never forgotten. The number of people who have written tributes is a testament to that. Rest in peace, Nigel.

  25. Mo Roberts says:

    Professor Rodley’s death is a great loss to human rights and all those who knew and had the privilege of meeting him. As one of his former students, meeting, talking and being taught by Professor Rodley is one of the greatest educational experiences of my life. He was a humbled, kind, selfless and hard working man. He will be greatly missed. My thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and all those who met him over the years. May his soul rest in perfect peace.

  26. Carolin Alvermann says:

    Sir Nigel, you have left us so early. Thank you for being a true role model and for encouraging and inspiring us so much. We will greatly miss you. Rest in peace.

  27. Marthe Lot Vermeulen says:

    Nigel, I feel grateful having been taught by you. It is a rare combination of great thinking, courage and humbleness that you inspired so many people with. As my supervisor for my LLM-thesis, you challenged and inspired me in every discussion we had about the topic of enforced disappearances. This thesis and your valuable contribution to that laid the foundation for my further PhD-research on this topic. I thank you for that. You will be greatly missed by the human rights community. I am sure you will live on in many people’s lives and many institutions. Rest in peace. My condolences to family and colleagues.

  28. Saijin Zhang says:

    I was shocked to learn the sad news from UN Radio yesterday and could not believe it. I first met Nigel during the drafting process of the UN “Declaration of Basic Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime and Abuse of Power” in 1985. Few years later, with his help, I joined the LL.M programme in Essex University. I got to know him better and the friendship continued. Over the years, we met from time to time at various occasions, particularly after I moved to the UN Secretariat in New York.The last time was when He came to NY to attend the Human Rights Committee session. I never thought that was the last time!May his soul rest in peace. Please convey to his family my deepest condolences.

  29. Fabien Maitre says:

    I am really sad to hear about the death of Nigel. In addition to being an inspiring legal mind, he was a generous and humble teacher.

    My condolences for his family and colleagues.

  30. Vinodh Jaichand says:

    What a great loss to the human rights community! For years to come, scholars will pore over his immense contribution to the vulnerable and marginalised. Rest in peace Sir Nigel.

  31. Adetutu Awojide says:

    Now I can say rest on my Humble Professor, your memory lives on! It took me a while to take the information in. You were very gentle in speaking, yet effective in passing your message across. My heart felt sympathy to your family and friends. Words cannot express my feelings. I have to end my words here with alot of encouragement for those of us you have left behind. Bless you, Miss you, sleep on. Love from Nigeria.

  32. Tony Ellis says:

    Sir Nigel will be sadly missed, I met him first when he was an examiner of my M. Phil degree, he was also Chairman of the UN Human Rights Committee for my first case there, following that we met at three HRC meetings in New York and Geneva when presenting shadow reports from New Zealand, last time in March 2016, he always had time for a chat, and was a never ending source of knowledge and inspiration.

  33. Roger Derham says:

    I would like to extend my sincerest condolences to Sir Nigel Rodley’s family on his recent death. It has robbed his family, the University of Essex and the world of a sane and forthright voice, particularly at this juncture in time, against the evils of Torture. When I chose my Thesis for the LL.M. at the Irish Centre for Human Rights, in NUI Galway in 2007 I elected to analyse the work of the first four Special Rapporteurs on Torture and as part of it entered into correspondence with all four. Despite an enormous demand on his time Sir Nigel was extremely generous with his help and with his strict legal analysis of the questions posed. We debated his concerns re the jus cogens basis of Torture versus that of Cruel and Degrading treatment and his approach to analysing and teasing out his thinking and determination have remained with me since. Rest in Peace Sir Nigel. Roger Derham, Forensic Physician, Galway. Ireland.

  34. Kishali Pinto-Jayawardena says:

    Professor Nigel Rodley’s contributions to struggles yo restore the Rule of Law in Sri Lanka will always be remembered. This was recorded in a tribute to him published in the Sunday Times, Colombo http://www.sundaytimes.lk/170129/columns/recalling-those-old-and-very-same-failures-of-justice-226640.html

    We will miss him deeply. Rest in peace.

  35. It is with great sadness that we received the message of the death of Sir Nigel.
    Over many years it was a privilege to meet him, cooperate with him, and enjoy his wisdom, for me personally from the time he was Sec Gen of Amnesty International, later in the working group that wrote the Istanbul Protocol.
    He had a paticularly good sense of cooperation between legal and medical experts, what a blessing that was.
    We will miss Nigel. May he rest in peace.

  36. Wynn and Rod Chapman says:

    What a lovely privilege to have been befriended by ‘Sir ‘Nige’ (our nickname for him) a warm friendship that both my husband Rod Chapman and I feel so very grateful for. To me he was one of my favourite people – caring, thoughtful, kind and funny in his own dry way. We regret not being able to spend more time with Nigel and Lyn these last few years, but the memories we have will always be precious. And what an incredible legacy he has left! My sincere condolences to all his family. Wynn and Rod Chapman

  37. This is a huge loss for our community. Nigel was not only a brilliant thinker and advocate, he was also humble and empathetic and deeply humane. And he always had a kind word for those of us who called on him for support or advice, despite the demands on his schedule. We should all aspire to live the kind of life he did.

  38. Ingrid Nifosi-Sutton (LLM 1999) says:

    Dear Nigel, to me you will always be one of the greatest champions of human rights. Thanks for all you taught me.

  39. Peter Splinter says:

    I first met Sir Nigel as a Canadian government official when I had to handle a communication that he sent to Canada as Special Rapporteur on torture. At first everything I learned about the communication told me that he had got it badly wrong and the allegations were baseless. Nigel patiently explained to me in his forceful but ever courteous way that even governments with good intentions can fail to see egregious human rights violations committed in their country. Time proved him right, and his is a lesson that stays with me to this day.

    The human rights community has lost a great champion and a model of intellectual rigour, integrity, humility and courtesy with the death of Sir Nigel. The greatest tribute that we can pay to him will be to be inspired by him professionally and personally in taking forward the challenge of protecting human rights at a time when that challenge is so great.

    Rest in peace Nigel.

  40. It is with great sadness that I receive the news of Nigel’s death. He was my tutor in International Law at the LSE when I was an undergraduate there in 1976-77. His classes were an inspiration to me and he certainly contributed to the kindling of a career long interest in human rights law for me. His achievements speak for themselves. He leaves behind a legacy from which we can all take heart. The work continues and we can only thank Nigel for his pioneering contribution, and example, that should inspire us all to work on in the field, especially in the current context of our times. A life well lived. Thank you, Nigel.

  41. Roichatul Aswidah says:

    Very sad to learn the passing of Professor Sir Nigel Rodley. It is a great loss. He is a great scholar and a great teacher for all of the students.
    As the Vice Chairperson of the Indonesian National Commission on Human Rights and alumni of the University of Essex I acknowledge his very important and significant work and contribution for human rights. We will remember him by giving our best for human rights and humanity as he did.

  42. Alex Moorehead says:

    What incredibly sad news. I felt privileged to have been a student of Nigel’s. Kind, always approachable and generous with his time, Nigel’s determined, principled and fearless approach to human rights advocacy has been an inspiration to me. He will be sorely missed in these troubled times when the need for strong and wise advocates like Nigel is so great.

  43. Nathan family says:

    We are shocked to hear this very sad news. We got to know Nigel since the death of our father Clemens Nathan with whom Nigel collaborated on various human rights conferences and books. We have been working with him on a new project and have found him to be an extraordinary man, combining intellect with great humanity and warmth. In our relatively short acquaintance, we have felt honoured to have had the pleasure and benefit of his friendship, time and help for which we will be forever grateful.

  44. Bernhard Schaefer (LLM 2000) says:

    Very sad news that take my breath away. He was a wonderful teacher to me. My thoughts are with you, Nigel!

  45. waleed sadi says:

    I was so sad to hear of Nigel’s death. He was a giant in the human rights processes. I first got to know him when I was chairperson of the UN Commission on Human Rights back in the early eighties. Since then I had worked along side with him, he in the Human Rights Committee and I in the parallel Committee on Eco.Soc.& Cultural Rights. He was a cherished friend and a dear colleague and a source of inspiration for all of us who are engaged in the promotion and protection of human rights.We shall all miss him. Waleed Sadi, Chair, Committee on Eco.Soc & Cultural Rights

  46. ‘A Giant among Human Rights Defenders’. Thus the title of a 1989 Martin-Ennals documentary filmportrait that featured Nigel Rodley as his deputy in the early days of Amnesty International. I was the proud maker, now saddened by the loss of this dear friend. His enigmatic character and kindness triggered me to join Amnesty in the nineties. We will all dearly miss him

  47. Ivy Achinivu (LLM 2016) says:

    I am deeply saddened by the news of your death. It is and would continue to be a rare privilege to have sat in your class in 2014/ 2015. Thank you for a selfless fight against torture.and thank you for impacting so much knowledge. You are a star and would continue to be. Keep resting Sir Nigel Rodley .

  48. Dan Seymour says:

    This is such sad news. Sir Nigel was a decent, generous, witty man, whose patience and willingness to educate, lead and share were unparalleled. It is a great loss to so many of us personally, to the human rights community more generally, and to all those who look to international mechanisms to protect them from the misuse of power.

    In my year at Essex we all called him “Noddy”. He insisted on calling me “tiger”. I wish I had enjoyed the privilege of spending more time with him.

    People like Sir Nigel leave an indelible imprint on institutions and individuals. Would that we could all afford the world the legacy that he has.

  49. David Rutherford says:

    As Chief Commissioner of New Zealand’s NHRI I acknowledge the passing of a great scholar, man and friend whose wisdom has guided us all. We loved him for his wisdom but as much for his manner. He was always open to us never too busy to help. He simplified rather than complicating. We will miss him. We will remember him by doing our best and striving to met the standards he set.

  50. Nick Wortley says:

    Very sad and a great loss. A brilliant and wonderful man. Not only did he make an immense contribution to human rights he was also a kind, warm, and generous person. I feel honored to have known him and to have learnt from him. My condolences to his family and friends.

  51. Nigel was a great friend to René Cassin as an organisation, giving freely of his enormous experience and wisdom as a member of our Advisory Council.

    Danny Silverstone, Chair of René Cassin’s Trustee Board, said today:

    “This is indeed very sad news. Nigel was a towering figure within the international human rights world. He was also an extraordinarily nice man.”

    René Cassin Trustee, Alex Goldberg adds:

    “I have spent the last year working with Sir Nigel Rodley on a book about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In that short time I found myself in the presence of real gentleman and a giant in terms of his understanding of human rights.

    He has left a huge impression on me and I shall miss him, as will the millions of those who depended on his good offices. His life was one in the service of humanity and the world is a lesser place without him in it.”

  52. Kate Jones says:

    I am so sad to hear this news. Nigel was undoubtedly one of the human rights pioneers and leaders of his generation, and an inspiration to many. His intellectual and legal rigour have had tremendous impact across the piece of normative development and implementation – for example at the UN Human Rights Committee.

    Nigel and I became friends when we spoke opposite each other on a panel at Chatham House about 10 years ago, and our paths have crossed many times since in London, Geneva and Oxford. He was unfailingly warm, gracious and remarkably humble for one so distinguished. My very best wishes to those close to him.

  53. Marguerite Garling says:

    It is sad to think that Nigel has gone, but clearly he has touched many, many people over the years with his fine human qualities, and left a remarkable legacy in both academia and the broader human rights world. Strange, then, to remember him as Amnesty’s sole legal advisor working from an attic room in Theobalds Road, as he helped prepare the first world Conference Against Torture in 1973, work that was to grow into designing the key international Convention Against Torture. His later achievements marked a stellar trajectory from these early beginnings, always remaining true to his own firmly-held principles. And yet he always found the time to give friendly advice and encouragement to those around him. Rest in peace, Nigel. Sincere condolences to Lyn and family.

  54. Public Committe Against Torture in Israel says:

    We join the international human rights community in mourning the passing of Sir Nigel. We had the privilege of personally learning and benefiting from Sir Nigel’s expertise when in 2013 he agreed to co-write an Amicus brief in support of a Palestinian torture victim in a PCATI case pending in the Israeli High Court of Justice. His dedication and immense knowledge were a source of inspiration to all of us here and will continue to motivate us in our anti-torture work. RIP.

  55. Viviana Krsticevic says:

    Dear friends and colleagues, I learned yesterday of the passing of Nigel. He lives in the many lives he touched. Nigel was an architect and a construction worker of the human rights infrastructure that we have today. He helped develop norms, institutions, organizations, shaped the thinking and career of hundreds of bright lawyers, activists, and academics. In each of those spaces he contributed in ways that made our world a better place. His life is an example and an inspiration to all. I send you a warm hug, Viviana
    Viviana Krsticevic, Executive Director, Center for Justice and International Law

  56. Stephanie Barbour says:

    I am deeply saddened at the loss of Sir Nigel. I watched him with awe during my intern days in Geneva as he deftly probed the human rights records of states. When I later came to work at Amnesty, though he was long gone I became aware of his tremendous legacy – and how some still referred to us as “the Legal Office” in silent tribute to Nigel’s days. I was fortunate to cross paths with him many times as he remained such a friend to Amnesty’s lawyers. His words of encouragement and advice – and probing questions about our strategy on this and this – always reflected his deep insight, compassion and generosity of spirit and time. He will always be remembered.

  57. Franca Sciuto says:

    Nigel you will be greatly missed by all those including myself who worked with you at A.I. You have been a great friend, a mentor a passionate advocate of the human rights cause, with your wealth of knowledge, your erudition, your kindness you were an example for all of us.

  58. Luciano Mariz Maia says:

    Righteous, tender, firm, courageous. Nigel threw light over shadows, brought hope upon despair, showed compassion for the suffering. He, too, was a voice crying in the wilderness, so the deaf and blind society could suddenly hear and see. Let us show what we have learned from him, and let us carry on, as he did and would do.

  59. Gloria Nyakupinda says:

    I am deeply saddened by the loss of my former professor- Sir Nigel. He was so inspirational, there is no doubt his legacy will live forever. Rest in Peace my hero.

  60. Jill Hedges says:

    It was such a privilege to have known Nigel over the years. A great teacher, intellectually rigorous, kind, warm and funny, as well as one of the true greats in the human rights field. My deepest condolences to Lyn and his colleagues at Essex.

  61. Sumina Subba says:

    As his student, it was always a pleasure to sit in his class. He was passionate, vocal and unapologetic about his knowledge of human rights as well as the richness of his experience. Nigel, you will be sadly missed by all of us. You have taught us well. My condolences to his family and relatives.

  62. Philip MCEvoy says:

    I knew sir nigel in my capacity as a military lawyer. My fondest memory however was when he expressed a wish to meet the Red Devil’s – members of the Parachute Regiment. It transpired that Nigel’s father died in action during the Second World War in Arnhem serving alongside the regiment. It was a great pleasure to assist in granting this wish and we spent a fantastic day at netheravon in Wiltshire finishing the day – much to Nigel’s surprise in doing a tandem parachute jump. I still keep photos of the day – the grin/grimace on Nigel’s face said it all.

  63. Koldo Casla says:

    Nigel generously gave the global human rights community a brilliant mind and a dedicated heart. He shared knowledge with his students, but he also shared kindness. Those who worked most closely with him know about this virtue of his. His unique attitude of respect was a permanent feature of his classes, his one-to-ones in his office, and also his attentive email responses to alumni, even years after leaving Essex.

    He will be greatly missed.

    I am sure his family is fully aware of the indelible mark Nigel left on thousands of human rights defenders all over the world who learned so much from him.

  64. Anne-Katrin Speck says:

    I am deeply saddened to hear about the passing of Sir Nigel, a true champion of human rights. He was an inspiration to so many who had the privilege and pleasure to learn from and work with him. Nigel instilled in his students a passion for human rights that will help keep alive his remarkable legacy. He was a kind and humble man and will be greatly missed, at Essex and beyond.
    My thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.

  65. Clea Kahn says:

    The world will be a darker place without Nigel. Not just because he was such a strong defender of human rights, but because of his humour and joy in life. One of my favourite memories of my time at Essex was when someone would say something funny and he would just shake with soundless giggles.

    The most important thing I learned at the university of Essex – and Nigel was perhaps the fiercest example – is not to give up hope that you are making a difference. Nigel made the world a better place every day of his life. He will be missed.

  66. All of us at REDRESS are devastated to learn of Nigel’s death. He was a patron of REDRESS, but most importantly, our mentor and our friend. Nigel’s breadth of knowledge was unrivalled; he was tenacious in his pursuit of the prohibition of torture and other human rights causes he championed. He was also extremely sensitive to the devastating human cost of torture on the survivors. Nigel was hugely sought after for his expertise but he always made time, he was always there to give advice, to help and to keep us and many others in the human rights movement on the right track. To say that he will be missed is a real understatement; he leaves an amazing legacy to learn from and he will continue to inspire our work.

  67. Sandra Eveno says:

    It is with great sadness that your big departure was stated today , is it a coincidence that you leave us just before Uk will destroy the humans rights agreement ! You will be missed and remembered by me as they will replace it by the british bill of rights , one time in Uk there was a big heart for humanity that is now totally gone . Bless

  68. Connie de la Vega says:

    Nigel was one of the early collaborators with the Berkeley Crew and Human Rights Advocates. He was always cheerful despite having to deal with so many human rights problems. We were pleased that we were able to see him last fall in Minnesota where he continued as his usual cheerful self. We are very sorry to hear of his death and send our condolences to his family from the San Francisco Bay Area.

  69. Prakash Budha Magar says:

    It was a great pleasure to have had the opportunity to talk, hear, and learn from one of the greatest scholar, hardcore human right activist and a great human being, Prof. Sir Nigel Rodley. Your legacy will remain in hearts and minds of many, including me, for many years to come. You will dearly be remembered. May your soul rest in peace.

  70. The world lost a human rights hero today. Sir Nigel Rodley dedicated his career – and his life – to combating human rights violations wherever they occur. Sir Nigel was a good friend to The Advocates for Human Rights and to many of us in the human rights community in Minnesota. He served as the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture from 1993-2001 and was an influential member of the UN Human Rights Committee from 2001 until December 2016. Sir Nigel was a brilliant lawyer, a dedicated professor, a generous mentor and a determined activist – the epitome of a modern day knight. Sir Nigel made many visits to the Twin Cities, most recently with his wife Dr. Lyn Rodley in 2015. When we last met in Geneva in October 2016 during his last session as a member of the UN Human Rights Committee, Sir Nigel made a point of telling me how far he felt the UN’s human rights mechanisms had come during his tenure. “I can leave now knowing that we are all in good hands.” Thank you, Sir Rodley, for your contributions to the international system for protecting the human rights of all. You will be missed but have no fear that we will carry on with your work!

  71. Shreejana Pokhrel Siwakoti says:

    It gives such a blessed feeling to share that you are(your soul is around us) my professor too! You will always be in heart of your students and beyond Sir Nigel Rodely! Honored to have you as my academic doctor! You believed in me when I was loosing faith on my capacity and almost decide to wrap up and return home, your constant counseling and mentoring gave me and hundreds like me a meaningful transformation in human rights world. Its amazing to witness people getting inspired by you and your good work. Recalling your mentoring and your humble communication all the time! May your beautiful soul RIP.
    We will honor your legacy! I dedicate my LLM degree to you respected Professor and promise to keep your mentorship alive!

  72. Kate Pooler says:

    Terribly sad to read of Sir Nigel’s untimely passing. He leaves an enormous legacy. I am sure he would be proud to think of part of that legacy being the human rights work undertaken all over the world by his former students who have been and continue to be inspired by his life’s work. Thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues who mourn him. Rest in Peace Sir Nigel.

  73. Anna Edmundson says:

    Thank you Sir Nigel. You were an inspirational teacher – not just in the classroom and your books but leading by example through your amazing, ground-breaking work for the UN. You lit a spark in me nearly twenty years ago and it is no coincidence that I’ve spent my professional life since then working on issues related to the treatment of people in prison. Reading others’ tributes, I know I’m not alone. You have left a wonderful legacy which many of us (particularly those lucky enough to have been your students) will fight to preserve and advance in the years ahead. RIP.

  74. Professor Sir Nigel Rodley was a strong and generous supporter of the teaching and dissemination of human rights law for the benefit of lawyers from developing countries under the United Nations Programme of Assistance. He gave the human rights course at the first International Law Seminar for Arab States in Cairo and at the International Law Fellowship Programme in The Hague in 2015. He also recorded a lecture entitled United Nations Treaty and Charter-based Human Rights Bodies: Competitive or Complementary? for the United Nations Audiovisual Library of International Law. Lawyers around the world will continue to benefit from his extraordinary knowledge of and commitment to human rights law. We extend our sincere condolences to his family and colleagues. Virginia Morris, Secretary, Advisory Committee, United Nations Programme of Assistance.

  75. Anna Giudice (LLM 1998-1999) says:

    I am shocked and sad to hear the news. Sir Nigel was an amazing person who left a life-long impression on all his students. Maybe his light shine over us in these difficult days for human rights. Condolences to his family and the team at Essex.

  76. Camisha Bridgeman says:

    I was saddened to hear of Professor Sir Nigel’s passing and my thoughts and prayers go out to his family and loved ones during this difficult time. I was fortunate to meet Sir Nigel when he graciously agreed, notwithstanding his other commitments, to contribute to a small human rights conference I co-chaired in September, last year. I remain incredibly grateful for the time he invested. His passing is truly a loss, but we owe it to him and ourselves to collectively build on his incredible legacy and strive to make a safer, more humane world.

  77. OzlemDalkiran says:

    I am so shocked and saddened by the news. Human rights community lost an esteemed member. I will always remember his encouraging words and priceless advices – even and especially when we had disagreements. You will be remembered dearly, rest in piece.

  78. Nigel’s public achievements are self-evident, and self-evidently important as we enter a very threatening era. Those who knew him will remember the warmth and the dry sense of humour (but also how he kept you on your toes, because he didn’t suffer fools gladly). I hadn’t seen much of Nigel for a long time, but over the past few years he had been very generous with his advice on some research I was doing. Even after many years, our conversation always seemed to return at some point to the Amnesty cricket team (not the pinnacle of achievement for either of us, if truth be told, but the source of happy memories). Rest in peace, Nigel.

  79. Nigel was what we called our ‘secret weapon’ in the campaign in the early 1990s to get the US to ratify the ICCPR. Though earlier meetings had taken place with Senators to urge consent to ratification, it was when Nigel met with them, sharing persuasive arguments in his deep, authoritative voice, and in a British accent to boot, that some of them really sat up and took notice.

    I remain in awe of how he would always find the time to respond quickly to an email even though he no doubt received a daunting volume of emails daily. He also had a good-natured way of sharing his impressions. After he became a member of the UN Human Rights Committee I asked him how it was going. He replied that it was quite different working in a committee setting, and said with a twinkle in his eye: ‘I miss being a Special Procedure’. Nigel, we miss you.

  80. Ivan Shalev says:

    What a tremendous human being, the depth of his mind only matched by the purity of his heart.

    I share below a comment of Sir Nigel’s, made in passing in a 2014 lecture at Essex. It must have left quite an impression for me to remember today and dig up from the old notebook, so I hope others appreciate it. Spoken with the integrity of a true lawyer and advocate, with dedication to his students:

    “What lawyers eventually learn is that the law is quite fungible. What you can’t solve with the law, you solve with the facts. What you can’t solve with facts, you solve with the law. It’s the interplay that can be quite complex.”

  81. This is a sad day for the human rights community. Sir Nigel was a brilliant, strong and elegant mind who raised his voice in defence of those who are the most vulnerable in our society. May his life be an example for all of us. I was fortunate to have him as a PhD supervisor and he left an indelible mark in my life. I place my dearest thoughts with his family. Saudades, professor.

  82. Claudio Cordone says:

    Truly sad news at any time, but all the more so at a time when the human rights edifice Nigel so much contributed to is about to receive some new heavy blows.

    I have know Nigel since 1985, when I joined Amnesty where he was already an undisputed authority. Fearsome in his intellect, yet passionate and profoundly human. And he could be surprisingly funny – he never shied away from actively participating in the office pantomimes while they lasted! And on a serious note, he remained deeply caring about Amnesty long after he had left it to make his mark on other human rights bodies, as well as in his own right.

    It has been a true honour to have known him, worked with him, and been able to count on him as he was always there, as a mentor as well as a friend.

    Thank you Nigel.

  83. Gabriella Citroni says:

    This is very sad news and a tremendous loss for the human rights movement and for the academic world.
    Nigel will be greatly missed, but he leaves us with an invaluable legacy. His writings, his lectures and his whole practice stand as a great source of inspiration.
    Heartfelt condolences to his family and colleagues at Essex.
    So long, Nigel.

  84. Jason Snyder says:

    Today, the human rights community has lost one of its most fierce advocates in Sir Nigel Rodley. He spent the majority of his life combating human rights atrocities across the world. As one of the founders of the Human Rights Centre at Essex, he has directly influenced my personal and academic endeavors for over a decade. I know the entire Essex Mafia is united to mourn the loss and celebrate the life of our mentor. RIP Professor Rodley. Dum tempus habemus, operemur bonum.

  85. Sonya Rahaman says:

    I am so saddened at this loss. Professor Rodley was a wonderful, humble and inspiring figure in the defence of Human rights. He will continue to be an inspiration to all of us. I would like to send my condolences to his family.

  86. Patricia Viseur Sellers says:

    With much gratitude for your perceptive and insightful analysis of torture in periods of war and peace. I relish our discussions at Essex and CUNY concerning torture carried out by physical or mental sexual violence. May we honor your legacy.

  87. Doriane Hardy says:

    I’m very sad to hear of the passing of Sir Nigel Rodley. He was a human rights pioneer who shaped international law. He spent his life fighting for justice and making the world a better place. I am so grateful to have had the privilege of being his student and learning from him directly. Sir Nigel was such a humble man and always had time for his students. He was such an inspiration to the human rights world and the perfect example of why we should keep fighting the good fight. Sir Nigel, you will be missed at Essex and by the entire human rights community. May you rest in peace. My thoughts go out to your family, friends and the Essex human rights mafia.

  88. Carla Covarrubias says:

    It was a genuine pleasure learning from you and following in your footsteps. I remember when you stated in your usual eloquence that to be a human rights defender, one does not need to speak loud but be precise.

    You gave us that example, and pioneered so many issues and processes – I am left without words at hearing about your illness and shortly after of your departure to the world of memories.

    The movement against torture worldwide owes you a big thanks, and so do so many many generations of Essex graduates.

    You shaped a small army of defenders! Rest in peace, Nigel. You will not be forgotten.

  89. Jenny Goldschmidt says:

    Really shocked and sad to hear about the passing of Nigel, whom I met so many times in Geneva (where we both were in the ICJ ExCo), Utrecht (where he gave such an impressing annual Peter Baehr lecture at the Netherlands Institute of Human Rights of our Utrecht University) and on many other occasions. He was one of those people we cannot miss, because of his commitment, his experience, his knowledge and last but not least his warm and modest personality. We have a task to cherish his heritage in the field of human rights, and to keep him alive as an example to all. Thus he will never be forgotten.

  90. Claire Shirley says:

    It is with great sadness I heard of Nigel’s death tonight. He was on a Human Rights trip to China under Sir Geoffrey Howe at the same time as my father; they became firm friends and we have known Nigel and his wife Lynne ever since. They were regular visitors to the Aldeburgh Festival and kept up with us after my father died. He will be sorely missed. We feel deeply for his wife Lyn in her loss.

  91. Jacob Akuo says:

    The greatest professor there was in human rights law. The most erudite human being whoever taught me or graced a classroom I sat in; a fighter for the rights of humankind, a kind man with a great heart, a loving husband to a great wife whom I had a rare chance to meet once, a man words can never describe etc. RIP Sir Nigel Rodley. As I said, words will and can never be enough. My heart is with your family especially your gentle wife Lynn. May God rest your soul in his bosom!

  92. Dr Nephat Shumba says:

    Learning of the untimely departure of Professor Sir
    Nigel is profoundly an unfortunate loss and difficult to replace such a renowned human rights guru ever lived. However his works on human rights remain immutable. He was one of my inspiring human rights scholars who taught me, whom I am indebted for life. Thank you Sir Nigel. May your Soul Rest in Peace.

  93. Alex Wilks says:

    A brilliant and inspirational man, yet so modest and humane. I will never forget the time he took to speak with me on the phone when I was deciding to go to Essex and the touching message he sent me when my own father passed away just a few months ago. So sad.

  94. As a mentor and colleague, Sir Nigel Rodley was exemplary: kind, considerate, humble, and always seeking to learn and impart knowledge. Through the years, he had infinite patience for my questions about strategy and the law (and they were not few). And while as a professor he didn’t suffer fools easily, his expectations were more than reasonable (“Many intelligent people spent years of their lives making sure these human rights treaties came to be, the least you can do is remember their correct titles.”) I will miss him very very much. RIP.

  95. Colin Samson says:

    I’m very sad to hear of Nigel’s passing. He was kind, generous and thoughtful. My abiding memory of him is from last August when he took so much time to help me think through the political and legal implications of a situation affecting indigenous peoples I have worked with for over two decades.

    RIP

  96. Biljana Kotevska says:

    The news are devastating… An enormous loss of a Human Rights activist, scholar and professor.

    He had so much wisdom, knowledge, clarity of thought and patience that he will remain one of the greatest professors I have ever had. He treated us as equals to him. And in that one could see his greatness best – in the humility with which he answered every question we had as if he is hearing it for the first time which, of course, often was not the case…

    He is missed already. But I know great people like him live on through the imprints they leave with their work and through the way they have touched on so many people’s lives. And in this way he will live on forever.

  97. Gulia Taghiyeva says:

    It is a devastating news indeed. Sir Nigel was one of the very first professors who opened a door for me and other students to the belief in justice, human rights understanding and passion for those suffering from violence. We shall cherish memory of Sir Nigel for many years, while trying living up to the highest standards he had set up for all of us.

  98. Susie Alegre says:

    Such a sad loss of a wonderful man. Now, more than ever, we must work hard to make sure that his legacy lives on. He will be sorely missed across the world.

  99. Reed Brody says:

    Sir Nigel Rodley, one of the legends in the field of international human rights, died today in Colchester (UK) at the age of 75.
    During his career, Nigel was the founder of the legal office of Amnesty International (1973-90), United Nations’ Special Rapporteur on Torture, President of the International Commission of Jurists, Chairman of the UN Human Rights Committee and a long-time professor and Chair of the Human Rights Centre at the University of Essex. Author of the authoritative “Treatment of Prisoners under International Law,” he was probably the world’s foremost expert on the law of torture.
    I first met Nigel, through a common friend, at his cramped Amnesty office in London when I was just out of law school and thought “this is what I want to do.” I never made it to Amnesty, but I became kind of his junior counterpart for several years at the International Commission of Jurists as we worked and travelled together during the era of human rights standard-setting, helping draft norms on the independence of judges and lawyers, the use of force by law enforcement, enforced disappearances and the like. Nigel combined an absolute intellectual rigor and honesty, an understanding and appreciation of the real world from numerous field missions, and an abiding commitment to the dignity of those deprived of their liberty. I will never have his intellect or rigor, but I think that I learned as much about the law from him as I did from anyone. Many years later, when Nigel told me how impressed he was with my accomplishments, it was one of the highest compliments I ever received.
    Nigel was on call for me with advice as I worked on the Pinochet and later the Habré cases. He graciously wrote the introduction to my book (with Michael Ratner) “The Pinochet Papers” which he entitled “The Beginning of the End of Immunity and Impunity of Officials Responsible for Torture.”
    Almost no issue elicits such controversy as the treatment of those most reviled by society. Nigel’s rigor, his command of the law, his formality (and his British accent) allowed him time and again to speak truth to power. At a time when the world faces its greatest challenges to international law and human rights in our lifetime, his constant and strong voice will be missed.

  100. Bana Shoughry says:

    الله يرحمه

  101. Sara Sighinolfi says:

    May the human rights light that Nigel show us be always with us and continue in all our endevours for a better humanity. You will be missed.

  102. Ciarán Ó Maoláin says:

    Nigel was one of the most eloquent, elegant, charming and knowledgeable experts in the global human rights community. I had the pleasure of meeting him often during my time at the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission, and afterwards in various regional and international events. He spoke with precision, clarity and, always, that gentle smile.

  103. Mariette Grange says:

    Nigel put me through a tremendous learning curve at AI’s new Office to the UN in Geneva in the late 80s and early 90s and demonstrated that human rights norms and standards are not paper tigers. He was a wonderful mentor – despite filling our small office with his cold cigar smoke at 8am as we strategized before embarking for countless Commission on Human Rights meetings… His advocacy style was authoritative and he commanded respect. I later learned that Nigel’s own family had been decimated by barbarism before he was born and also in his very early years. Sir Nigel, so you knew why this work had to be done, and you always had your heart in the right place, and it will keep shining on.

  104. Neil Hicks says:

    I was fortunate to work at AI when Nigel led the legal office. His wisdom shaped my understanding of international human rights law. I, and a whole generation of AI colleagues from that time, owe a great deal to Nigel’s inspiring intellectual leadership.
    Neil Hicks, Director, Human Rights Promotion, Human Rights First

  105. I am deeply saddened to hear about the passing of Nigel. He was a warm, encouraging and inspirational figure in human rights and will be greatly missed by myself and I am sure many others around the world. A huge loss to the human rights community.

    My thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.

  106. Nazila Ghanea says:

    Sir Nigel Rodley was so honest and erudite, so polite yet straight, so intelligent yet respectful, and so giving to so many human rights causes. It would not be an over-statement to say that he uniquely shaped the human rights movement, literature and mechanisms in a way that nobody else can do so ever again. So many will miss him profoundly – Essex, ICJ, the Universal Rights Group, the UN Human Rights Committee and UN human rights system, the Special Procedures, the Foreign Secretary’s Advisory Group on Human Rights and the list goes on. Such a great loss.

  107. Sof class of LLM Ihr 2015 says:

    Sir Nigel, you have inspired so many of us to fight for human rights. You will be greatly missed.

  108. David Hofmeijer says:

    A truly wonderful human being. Much respect. Rest In Peace.

  109. Alex Neve (LLM 1991), Secretary General, Amnesty International Canada says:

    Such sorrowful news that dear Sir Nigel has left us. And how poignant to hear the news today in Halifax, where in many ways he launched onto his human rights path, teaching at Dalhousie Law School some 50’ish years ago. What Nigel has been for the global human rights community, literally everywhere, he has also been for me personally, as a mentor from my earliest days as an activist, advocate and student. I had the good fortune to be his student during his first year at the Human Rights Centre back in 90/91. He was a remarkable and inspiring blend of intellect, integrity, tenacity and kindness. We would not be where we are today in so many important international human rights struggles – including against torture and the death penalty – without his leadership, determination and solidarity. I would not be where I am today without his teaching, encouragement, wise counsel and friendship. Nigel’s torch is in our hands; and with real challenges ahead on the global human rights front we will certainly ensure it burns very bright indeed.

  110. Andrea Huber says:

    I am devastated to hear these news, how can this even be true.
    I am grateful that I got to know Nigel and honored to have worked with him during the last couple of years.
    Our encounters will be unforgettable to me. He will remain an inspiration and also the very, very, very high bar to measure knowledge, integrity and generosity. My condolences to family and colleagues.
    Schweren Herzens, Andrea

  111. Catherine Moore says:

    Had it not been for Nigel and listening to his keynote address at the Model UN Conference we had at Essex in early 2009, discussing human rights, torture, and the post 9/11 world, I don’t think I would be today representing a Guantanamo detainee today in the Military Commissions. I don’t think I would have been so interested in researching counterterrorism legislation in different jurisdictions and publishing my first article on the topic. I only had two years at Essex, but Nigel played a large role in laying the foundation for my human rights work, despite the fact that I never even took a human rights course at Essex.

    I will forever remember the last time I saw him, at the 2014 ASIL-ILA Joint Meeting in Washington, DC where he saw me in the audience, recognized me, smiled, and started off his remarks with “It’s so nice to to see so many familiar faces here.”

  112. Nele Schuldt says:

    I have been greatly influenced by this inspirational figure in human rights. I feel gratitude having had the chance to listen to his speeches and I truly hope his legacy will live on through all his students. He certainly has touched many lives.

    Thank you, Sir Nigel Rodley, whereever you may be now.

  113. Ebba Lekvall says:

    I was deeply saddened today to learn about the passing of Sir Nigel.

    His humility and generosity of spirit in sharing his knowledge and wisdom with us students, as well as his strong passion for and belief in human rights and his encouragement to all of us will forever stay with me.

    Thank you Nigel. You will be so very missed.

  114. Dominic Kavakeb says:

    Sir Nigel was one of the most honest, principled and kind people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. Although he never taught me at Essex, I have known him since 2011, when he was a Commissioner on an extraordinary investigation into human rights abuses in Bahrain. Despite the enormous pressures on him during this time, he was absolutely committed to uncovering the truth in an impartial and fair way, bending over backwards to ensure all voices were heard.

    He earned my immediate respect and it’s an honour to have called him a very dear friend. No matter how busy he’d always reply to my emails immediately and was ever-ready to support me with advice or references in my career.

    His death is such a loss, not just to Essex but the entire world. No doubt his inspiration lives on in people struggling for human rights everywhere. He gave his life to humanity and he deserves to be remembered as one of the truly great contributors to the human race.

  115. Cornelia Zeineddine says:

    Very sad news for the human rights community and international law practitioners. We benefited from the humble attitude of Sir Nigel, his wisdom and power of knowledge. He will be missed dearly! Rest in peace

  116. Alice Kuczkiewicz says:

    Essex Uni and its students are immensely fortunate that Sir Nigel Rodley chose them as the place where he could bring to full fruition his intelligence and ardent commitment to human rights. Thank you Sir Nigel for conveiying your inspiration and teaching us that the first quality of great man is their humility. My thoughts go out to your family and friends.

  117. Mandira Sharma says:

    I am devastated to hear the news. You encouraged me to come back to Essex to do my Ph.D, where I used to be a LLM student a decade ago. I will always remember you not only as a global human rights leader that inspired millions but a very supportive and humble supervisor and mentor. You will be greatly missed. Goodbye and rest in peace.

  118. Mahdi Ghuloom says:

    It is very hard to describe such a figure and to appreciate their accomplishments and contributions. Rest in peace, Sir Nigel

  119. So sad to learn about the death of Sir Nigel Rodley. We shall always remember his dedication in combating torture, and his enthusiasm when we worked together for standardization of effective investigation and documentation of torture many years ago. Please rest in peace with all the good memories you have left behind.

  120. Ricky Gunawan says:

    You were my first reason I came to Essex to stud human rights. As a giant in your field, you were extremely humble and truly inspirational. I learnt a lot from you. I was and still am profoundly grateful to have learn directly from you. Thank you so much for all the work you have done for human rights. Terima kasih. Rest in peace.

  121. Hans Fridlund says:

    A very generous and humble man with a contagious smile and laughter.

  122. Charles Kirk says:

    As many have said, humble is one of the first words that comes to mind when I think of Nigel. Always incredibly clear, witty, sophisticated and balanced. I knew him better through his writings than in person, but both his speech and prose have left a lasting impression on me, and thousands of others. A true giant in human rights.

    My condolences to his family and colleagues at Essex.

  123. Sejal Parmar says:

    I’m very sorry to hear of the passing of Nigel, one of the all time great human rights lawyers. He was critical, smart, encouraging and funny during my interactions with him. He leaves an amazing legacy of legions of human rights advocates, people who want to make a difference and are willing to stand up against injustice.

  124. It is not only because of what you have achieved for human rights, for people and for the world, but also because of your humble and kind attitude towards all that we will miss you. Personally, I will remember the time that you sat in the very front line when I presented my doctoral research, so curious, interested and with full of questions. When I explained my findings, you said you were shocked. I respected you at that time for your continued enthusiasm, your humble posture and the attitude to learn new things, and still be shocked, after all these decades of your tremendous effort in improving human rights for all. Please rest in peace.

  125. Marianne Provan says:

    A truly inspirational man. Very sad news.

  126. peter beresford says:

    Very sad to hear of the death of Sir Nigel. All good wishes in this very difficult time to those close to him. What a wonderful legacy he has left to all of us. He will not be quickly forgotten. It is sad that his passing should be at a time when human rights domestically and internationally seem under such threat. thank you and RIP

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