What Is the Basis of Contemporary International Human Rights Law

In addition, other intergovernmental or political bodies are engaged in norm-setting, intergovernmental dialogue, monitoring or promoting human rights; These bodies include the United Nations Human Rights Council, the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights and the Commission on the Status of Women. The relationship between international human rights law and international humanitarian law is controversial among international jurists. This discussion is part of a broader discussion on the fragmentation of international law. [2] While pluralist scholars view international human rights law as distinct from international humanitarian law, proponents of the constitutionalist approach view the latter as a subset of the former. [3] In short, those who prefer separate and autonomous regimes point to differences in applicability; International humanitarian law applies only in times of armed conflict. Regional systems of international human rights law complement and complement national and international human rights law by protecting and promoting human rights in certain regions of the world. There are three main regional human rights instruments that have enshrined human rights law on a regional basis: The Council of Europe is separate from the European Union, but the European Union should accede to the European Convention on Human Rights. All Member States of the European Union are members of the Council. The EU also has a separate document on human rights, the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. [28] The first, adopted in 1965, is the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD), followed by the ICCPR and the ICESCR in 1966. The international human rights regime then began to move away from a general approach and instead focus on particularly marginalized and oppressed groups or issues: the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), adopted in 1979; the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (1984); the Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989); the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (1990); and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (2006).

The most recent treaty is the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (ICED), which was also adopted in 2006 but has not yet entered into force. With the adoption in 2008 of an optional protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights allowing individual complaints of alleged violations of socio-economic rights, the United Nations treaty system now also embodies the principle that all rights are justiciable. Twenty years after the adoption of the Universal Declaration, the first International Conference on Human Rights was held in Tehran in 1968. When the world was caught in the grip of the Cold War at this point, little consensus emerged and little was achieved. The situation was quite different when the Second World Conference was held in Vienna in 1993. The Cold War was over, but the genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina was taking place. In that context, 171 heads of State and Government met and adopted the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action. He affirmed that all rights are universal, indivisible and interdependent. Subsequently, several resolutions adopted therein had been implemented, including the adoption of an optional protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and the establishment of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, with the first High Commissioner (José Ayala Lasso) having been elected in 1994. The High Commissioner has primary responsibility for human rights at the United Nations.

The growing presence in the field of human rights in the countries affected by Ratschen also falls within this function. More recently, the subregional level has become another forum for the struggle for human rights, particularly in Africa. Due to the weakness of the regional system under the aegis of the African Union, a number of African Sub-Regional Economic Communities (RECs) emerged from the 1970s onwards: the Economic Community of West African States, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the East African Community (EAC). Although these RECs focus primarily on subregional economic integration rather than the realization of human rights, there is inevitable overlap as their objectives of economic integration and poverty reduction are linked to the realization of socio-economic rights. In a number of the founding treaties of the RECs, human rights are explicitly recognized as an integral part of the objectives of the organizations. By establishing subregional courts with implicit or sometimes explicit mandates to deal with human rights cases, it is clear that these economic communities have become key roles in the African regional human rights system. In addition, the UN, Inter-American and African systems appoint individual experts to monitor the human rights situation in a number of priority areas, such as arbitrary detention and discrimination. These experts are often referred to as rapporteurs and carry out their work by receiving information from civil society, host countries and reporting on the human rights situation and how they violate or respect international standards. The Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights plays a similar role, although his mandate does not cover a specific issue. [12] The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights supports and coordinates UN activities in the field of human rights and deals independently through country visits, stakeholder dialogues, and public statements, as do rapporteurs. [13] The role of civil society is of particular importance when the dispute over an issue impedes state action.

The Yogyakarta Principles on the Application of International Human Rights Law on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity are a good example. Although adopted in November 2006 by 29 experts from just 25 countries, the 29 principles contained in the document – which relate to States` obligations regarding sexual orientation and gender identity – are becoming an internationally accepted reference point and are likely to guide future discussions. The basic system for the promotion and protection of human rights under the aegis of the United Nations is based on a twofold basis: the Charter of the United Nations adopted in 1945 and a network of treaties subsequently adopted by the members of the United Nations. The Charter-based system applies to all 192 UN member states, while only states that have ratified or acceded to certain treaties are required to comply with the part of the treaty (or treaty) system to which they have expressly consented. In addition, individuals (as opposed to States) may be prosecuted or prosecuted under domestic law for violations of international humanitarian law or international criminal law, or the jus cogens norms of international law. The International Criminal Court, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia and a number of internationalized criminal tribunals initiate such prosecutions. International human rights law sets out the obligations of Governments to act or refrain from certain actions in order to promote and protect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of individuals or groups. This principle is supported by Amnesty International and other human rights organizations, which believe that certain crimes pose a threat to the international community as a whole and that the community has a moral duty to act. There are important differences between the former Commission on Human Rights and the current Human Rights Council. As a subsidiary organ of the General Assembly, the Council enjoys a higher status than the Commission, which was a functional organ of the Economic and Social Council. It has a slightly smaller membership (47 States) and its members are elected by an absolute majority of the Assembly (97 States).

In order to avoid longer domination by a few States, members may be elected for only two consecutive three-year terms. The Council serves as a permanent or permanent body that meets regularly, and not just for “politically charged six-week annual meetings” as the Commission has done. According to the more human rights-sensitive selection criteria, the list of States elected by the Assembly contrasts with the countries that were members of the Commission in 2006. The Assembly may, by a two-thirds majority, suspend a member who commits serious and systematic violations of human rights. The term “human rights” can be used in an abstract and philosophical sense, either as a designation for a particular category of moral claims that anyone can invoke, or, more pragmatically, as an expression of these claims in positive law, for example as constitutional guarantees for holding Governments accountable in the context of national legal procedures.