International Human Rights Law

International Human Rights Law


In 1966, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) were adopted by the United Nations, between them making the rights contained in the UDHR binding on all states that have signed this treaty, creating human rights law.

Since then numerous other treaties (pieces of legislation) have been offered at the international level. They are generally known as human rights instruments. Some of the most significant are:

  1. Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD) adopted in 1966, entered into force in 1969)
  2. Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) (Entered into force 1981)
  3. United Nations Convention Against Torture (CAT) (Adopted in 1984, entered into force in 1984)
  4. Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) (Adopted 1989, Entered into force 1989)
  5. International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families (ICRMW) ( Adopted in 1990, Entered in force in 2003)

Enforcement of Human Rights Law

The enforcement of international human rights law is the responsibility of the Nation-state, and it’s the primary responsibility of the State to make human rights a reality. There is currently no international court that upholds human rights law (the International Criminal Court deals with crimes against humanity, war crimes, and genocide), although the Council of Europe is responsible for both the European

Convention on Human Rights and the European Court of Human Rights act as a court of last appeal for human rights issues in member states. In practice, many human rights are very difficult to legally enforce due to the absence of consensus on the application of certain rights, the lack of relevant national legislation, or of bodies empowered to take legal action to enforce them.

What does it mean by Universal Jurisdiction of Human Rights?

Universal jurisdiction is a controversial principle in international law whereby states claim criminal jurisdiction over persons whose alleged crimes were committed outside the boundaries of the prosecuting state, regardless of nationality, country of residence, or any other relation with the prosecuting country. The state backs its claim on the grounds that the crime committed is considered a crime against all, which any state is authorized to punish. The concept of universal jurisdiction is therefore, closely linked to the idea that certain international norms are ergo omens, or owned to the entire world community, as well as the concept of jus. cogens.

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