CWRU professors, alumni collaborate to produce influential NGO report on Rohingya genocide

United Nations Building

Co-founded in 1995 by CWRU Law Co-Dean Michael Scharf, the Public International Law & Policy Group (PILPG) is a global pro bono law firm that provides free legal assistance to parties involved in peace negotiations, drafting post-conflict constitutions and war crimes prosecution/transitional justice.

Last year, the U.S. State Department commissioned PILPG to investigate the atrocities against the Rohingya in Myanmar in response to reports of at least 10,000 killed and nearly 800,000 people displaced by the Myanmar military action in 2017.

Led by CWRU alumna Margaux Day (Vice President of PILPG) and CWRU Adjunct Professor Greg Noone (Senior PILPG Peace Fellow), the PILPG team interviewed nearly1,100 Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh and drafted a comprehensive report with the help of Dean Scharf and Jim Johnson, the Director of CWRU’s War Crimes Research Office.

The International Criminal Court Office of the Prosecutor cited the PILPG report 55 times in its brief submitted in July 2019 requesting authorization to open an investigation into crimes against humanity committed in Myanmar against the Rohingya:  

Since its founding, PILPG has provided legal assistance with over two dozen peace negotiations, and over two dozen post-conflict constitutions, and has assisted every international and hybrid criminal tribunal, as well as helped to create a number of domestic transitional justice mechanisms.  Over the past 20 years PILPG has operated offices in 25 countries and annually provides $20 million worth of pro bono legal assistance.