Statement from Green Party MP Golriz Ghahraman

“I am deeply offended by the suggestion that I am a genocide denier. I am strongly committed to upholding human rights, and my work experience is testament to that.

“During my legal career, I worked on both prosecution and defence teams, here in New Zealand and for the United Nations.

“That included working in legal advisor roles on defence teams at the International Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, and a role as Assistant Co-Prosecutor at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal.

“Every role I have held in international justice, on both defence and prosecution, in internship and paid positions, has been as part of the official United Nations workforce. In fact it would be impossible to work in an ‘unofficial capacity’ at international tribunals.

“This is all on the public record. I’ve spoken extensively with journalists and at public engagements about my work experience before I was a candidate for the Green Party, during the election campaign and since I’ve become an MP.

“While the crimes being investigated at these tribunals are undoubtedly heinous, maintaining a fair and robust trial process is absolutely necessary to upholding the human rights framework. In fact the United Nations system requires it.

“I am proud to have been involved in that tradition of fair and transparent international justice. Victims of conflict and genocide deserve a process where the evidence is tested and the verdicts are safe. This is the only way the cycle of violence will end and each group can move forward.” 

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