Sheila Paylan

International Human Rights Lawyer

Region(s): Global
Country of focus: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia
Based in Yerevan


Current Occupation: International Human Rights Lawyer
Organization/Institution: Independent
Language: English, French

Sheila Paylan ( @SheilaPaylan ) is an expert in international criminal law, human rights and gender, and former legal advisor to the United Nations across countries and regions. She spent more than 15 years advising judges and senior officials of various UN-backed international criminal tribunals, including for Rwanda, the former Yugoslavia, and the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia.

From 2019 to 2021, she was appointed by the UN Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights as the Legal Advisor and Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Specialist to a Team of International Experts mandated to assist the judicial and military authorities of the Democratic Republic of Congo with investigating and prosecuting war crimes, crimes against humanity, and gross human rights violations.

Now based in Yerevan, she regularly consults for a variety of international organizations, NGOs, think tanks and governments, and has published extensively on the subjects of international justice, human rights, self-determination, and the responsibility to protect, particularly in the geopolitical context of the South Caucasus.