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  • Author: Kirsty Gover
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: When the UN General Assembly voted in 2007 to adopt the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), only Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the USA cast negative votes. This article argues that the embedding of indigenous jurisdictions in the constitutional orders of these states via negotiated political agreements limits their capacity to accept certain provisions of the UNDRIP. Once the agreement-making process is set in motion, rights that do not derive from those bargains threaten to undermine them. This is especially true of self-governance and collective property rights, which are corporate rights vested to historically continuous indigenous groups. Since these rights cannot easily be reconciled with the equality and non-discrimination principles that underpin mainstream human rights law, settler governments must navigate two modes of liberalism: the first directed to the conduct of prospective governance in accordance with human rights and the rule of law and the second directed to the reparative goal of properly constituting a settler body politic and completing the constitution of the settler state by acquiring indigenous consent. Agreements help to navigate this tension, by insulating indigenous and human rights regimes from one another, albeit in ways not always supported by the UNDRIP.
  • Topic: Human Rights, International Law, United Nations, Governance
  • Political Geography: Europe, Canada, United Nations, Australia, New Zealand, United States of America
  • Author: Mara Tignino
  • Publication Date: 07-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: Evelyne Schmid’s new book, Taking Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Seriously in International Criminal Law, aims to provide a bridge between developing practice and existing knowledge. At the heart of her book lies the question of how, or to what extent, violations of ESCR are addressed in international criminal proceedings and transitional justice mechanisms. She criticizes the current marginalization of ESCR abuses in scholarship on international criminal law and bemoans the reality that ‘efforts to address the legacy of widespread human rights abuses display a bias towards civil and political rights’. While some have argued for an expansion of international criminal law to account more directly for violations of ESCR, Schmid claims such an expansion is unnecessary; in her view, such violations already fall within the scope of international crimes.
  • Topic: Genocide, Human Rights, International Law, United Nations, War Crimes, Courts, Transitional Justice
  • Political Geography: Europe, North Korea, Cambodia, United Nations, Myanmar
  • Author: Loveday Hodson
  • Publication Date: 05-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: This article places the UN Women's Committee at its centre in order to consider the normative implications of having a space within the realm of international law that is headed by women decision-makers, whose remit is specifically gendered and whose task is to uphold the rights of women. It suggests that the Committee's importance has largely been overlooked, which is a considerable oversight. The Committee is uniquely positioned to contribute to the transformation of human rights norms, occupying, as it arguably does, positions simultaneously at the centre and at the periphery of international law. In particular, this article examines the jurisprudence that has emerged under the individual complaints procedure of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and questions how far the Committee has been able to develop women's rights in recent years into a body of law that departs from the normative and structural limitations of international human rights laws.
  • Topic: Human Rights
  • Political Geography: United Nations
  • Author: Wolfgang S. Heinz
  • Publication Date: 02-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: Two renowned scholars of international human rights protection from the University of Berne offer this excellent volume which is based on and expands the second edition of their book Universeller Menschenrechtsschutz (2008). Professor Walter Kälin was representative of the UN Secretary General on the Human Rights of Internally Displaced Persons, and from 2003 to 2008 a member of the UN Human Rights Committee. Jörg Künzli is Associate Professor of Law at the University of Berne.
  • Topic: Human Rights
  • Political Geography: United Nations
  • Author: Toby King
  • Publication Date: 11-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: Since 11 September 2001, countries across the world have adopted an enormous range of anti-terrorism laws with the potential to undermine even the most basic and long-established human rights. Fundamental principles such as habeas corpus and public trial before an independent and impartial tribunal have been thrown into question. Administrative detention without trial is no longer, in Justice John Paul Stevens's words, 'the hallmark of the totalitarian state', but already a reality in some democracies and under serious consideration in others.
  • Topic: Human Rights
  • Political Geography: Germany, United Nations