Five times Golriz Ghahraman was open about her defence work

Five times Golriz Ghahraman was open about her defence work
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Golriz Ghahraman is being accused of concealing her work as part of legal teams defending war criminals at international tribunals.

She worked on legal defence teams in Rwanda and The Hague and in prosecution in Cambodia. 

The whole saga began when Ms Ghahraman spoke to NZME about an influential year in her life. She chose a year in which she worked for a defence team at the Rwanda Tribunal.

She, along with the Green Party, has since been accused of concealing the work. 

Newshub found five instances in which she openly shared her work on defence teams.

1. The Herald's "Green MP Golriz Ghahraman on a life-changing year in Rwanda"

Ms Ghahraman chose to talk about 2008, when she worked for defence for the Rwanda Tribunal.

"The mission was to individualise blame so groups don't keep going in a cycle of violence. The point was to leave a legacy of everyone being equal before the law and change the culture of impunity so you don't get to do whatever you want just because you're the president," she told reporter Paul Little. 

2. The Herald, again - but it didn't make it past draft stage

"The story was supposed to be part of a pre-election series," Kirsty Johnston tweeted.

"But we used it when she was elected. Call me naive but I assumed getting defence experience was normal, not a big deal, and there were other more relevant things to include."

3. Vice on October 10 

In the first paragraphs, the article mentions Ms Ghahraman's defence work.

"If you're going to convict someone, you have to know what those individuals were actually responsible for.

In a transcript, Ms Ghahraman corrected journalist Tess McClure, who assumed she worked as a prosecutor.

"VICE: So you worked as a prosecutor in Cambodiaand in Yugoslavia and Rwanda, what were your roles there?

"Ghahraman: I was a lawyer on defence teams there."

4. LinkedIn

You have to scroll down, but it's there. Defence team on for the United Nations Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

5. NZ Law Society's LawTalk magazine, November 3 

"She has worked as a prosecutor and defence lawyer at United Nations tribunals for Rwanda, the former Yugoslavia, and the Khmer Rouge tribunal in Cambodia, on trials of former heads of state accused of committing international crimes and human rights violations," the article states.

Some of the fiercest criticism of Ms Ghahraman has come from Phil Quin, a former Labour staffer and former consultant to the Rwandan government, who said she shouldn't be in Parliament because she volunteered to defend mass murderers.

Meanwhile, the Law Society says criticism of defence lawyers is not acceptable. 

"It is totally wrong to identify the lawyer with the client's actions," Law Society President Kathryn Beck said.

But while claims of omitting mention of the defence work might be questionable, Ms Ghahraman hasn't been proactive in correcting journalists who have assumed she worked in prosecution.

The Green Party requested a correction to a month-old Guardian article on Wednesday.