The Human Rights Commission

Human Rights Commission is established to monitor, observe, scrutinize and make known publicly major phenomena which concerns human rights violation worldwide or situations of human rights violation in specific countries (Human Rights and Constitutional Rights, 2008). The Commission is composed of 53 individual states that investigate and deal with delicate and pressing human rights situations. The Human Rights Council, on the other hand is concerned primarily on upholding and strengthening the promotion and security of human rights worldwide.

It is a system under the UN General Assembly which address and creates recommendations about current Human Rights violations (Devine et al. , 1999). Lastly, the Human Rights Committee is a group of experts that is responsible in monitoring the implementation of the International Covenant and Political Rights (ICCPR). The different States that signed the ICCPR are obliged to submit a report to the committee to elucidate how the rights on the Covenant are being implemented (United Nations, 2008). What is meant by the concept of a non-derogable right and what is an example of such a right? Answer:

Basically non-derogable rights are universal human rights that appeals to moral right of a person based on his/her being human (Human Rights and Constitutional Rights, 2008). Thus, these rights ought not to be suspended by any circumstances such as war or in case of state emergencies. The most basic non-derogable right is the inherent right to life. It suggests that no one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his/her life. Other non-derogable rights includes but are not limited to: right not to be subjected to torture, prohibition of slavery and freedom of thought, religion and conscience (United Nations, 2008).

What is international humanitarian law? Answer: International Humanitarian Law (IHL) corresponds to the ‘law of armed conflict’. Others refer to it as the ‘law of war’. This is in effect of its rules which serves to ‘limit the effects of armed conflicts’ (Devine et al. , 1999). It tries to protect those persons who are not participating in the war. It is also responsible for restricting the ‘means and methods of warfare. IHL is a major part found in the Geneva Conventions. It applies to armed conflicts but not n internal disturbances or violence.

It restricts the use of Biological warfare and Chemical weapons. It also protect Cultural property and against the involvement of children in war (Mill and Ball, 1992). Identify the Helsinki Accords Answer: The Helsinki Accords is more properly known as the Final Act of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe held in Helsinki on July and August 1975 (Van der Heijden, Tahzib-Lie, 1998). This act is signed by thirty five states across Europe with the goal to improve the relations that exist between the Communist and the Western Bloc.

Accordingly, the Act is politically motivated to improve and increase the relationships between the member States which ought to bring security, peace and cooperation in Europe. Having the same historical background and living in the same continent, the proponents of Helsinki Accords ought to take into account the distinctiveness and the diversity that exist among them(Van der Heijden, Tahzib-Lie, 1998). Such view somehow reduced and overcome distrust and conflict while increasing the confidence of each States. What is an “international regime”? Answer:

International Regimes are organizations formed to help different countries coordinate their actions (Van der Heijden, Tahzib-Lie, 1998).. It is through regimes that telecommunication is established and is far easier. It is important to be able to understand the various ways and circumstances by which different states reach cooperation. Thus, International Regimes are considered as international actors. Prominent examples of regimes include but are not limited to the Kyoto Protocol, Basel Convention and the International Monetary Funds. These regimes are constructed to meet certain international needs such as in terms of security and funding.

Regimes can also affect the politics of a member States (Van der Heijden, Tahzib-Lie, 1998). . Most international regimes, being independent from the others, are powerful enough to be considered as hegemonies. What is a reservation, in relationship to a treaty? Answer: Reservation/s is a term that is used in treaty/ies to indicate a ‘unilateral statement that is made by a State in signing, accepting, ratifying, acceding and approving a certain treaty so as it assert to exclude and/or modify the effects of certain provisions of the treaty in their application to that State (United Nations, 2008).

’ However the interpretation of reservation might coincide with interpretative declaration. To clarify this matter, it should be taken into account that reservations are made formally by the State at the instance of expressing its consent, while interpretative declarations are made any time. Interpretative Declaration attempts to clarify matters with respect to the provisions of the treaty (Gardiner, 2003). Name one country that has signed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Answer:

The Union of Soviet Socialist Republic (USSR) refused to approve the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in 1945 (Gardiner, 2003). However, in the 1975 they agreed to ratify the declaration nonetheless. This is due to the conditions of the Helsinki Accords. According to Devine et al. (1999), it is only after 1985 that the USSR increasingly accepted the humanitarian and human rights principles articulated in Basket Three of the Helsinki Accords… which offered a standard of behavior when 1989 European Revolutions occurs. Part II

Analyze the text of the UDHR and the two Covenants with respect to how they treat one of the fundamental philosophical issues underlying human rights, such as: who holds rights; why rights-holders have rights; what rights are; the reasons for which rights can be derogated; or the reasons for which rights can be limited. Answer: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights addressed the universality and intrinsic quality of certain Rights. By being intrinsic, the Universal Declaration tries to put forward the fact that despite national boundaries and different ideologies people with respect to their being a human being has an inherent right.

Overall, the rights described in the UDHR refer to all people despite their personal background and/or nationality. The Universal Declaration served as standard of value (Devine et al. , 1999). This point out that the UDHR merely act to establish moral rights. In a sense, while moral rights can be considered as inalienable, inherent and universal, it is not legally binding enough. To this end, the two other covenants are introduced, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Social Economic and Cultural Rights (ICSECR).

These two covenants encompass more legally binding regulations. The two covenants. The two covenants, on the other hand, are devised in such a way to promote the legality of human rights that are stated in the Universal Declaration. The imposition of legal status tries to capture a move towards creating an international legal system. The two covenants are bounded by other States law. The two covenants are structured to become more legally binding than the Universal Declaration (Van der Heijden, Tahzib-Lie, 1998).

It must be noted that the Universal Declaration is a recommendation made by the United Nations’ General Assembly. Thus, its legality is somewhat shaky although there are domestic rights that are catered to address the rights mentioned in the Declaration. In 1966, while most third world countries formed, the two other covenants are ratified (Van der Heijden, Tahzib-Lie, 1998).. Thus, most of the third world countries draft their constitutions in relation and with respect to the provisions of the two covenants. The right holders are the people themselves in both the UDHR and the two Covenants.

Nonetheless, the UDHR and the two covenants ceased to be effective if a State is not signatory of the United Nations or refused to ratify the UDHR or the two international Covenants. Rights basically refer to the laws that apply to a person. Normally it is within the jurisdiction of the society and/or the government to determine and limit a person’s right. As described above, rights are either noral rights or legal rights. Due to the Universal Declaration, there has been a dominant consensus with regards to moral rights.

However, several States disagree with the legality of the two covenants since some of its provisions are not compatible with their culture and beliefs (Van der Heijden, Tahzib-Lie, 1998). The Universal Declaration tries to encompass all cultures and create the recommendation of Human Rights in a very flexible manner. Objections and reservations tend to show that human rights are not entirely universilizable. In such case, a nation can hold reservation or generally refuse to be a signatory of a particular covenant. Thus, the applicability of the rights mentioned in the UDHR and its two covenants are not as lawfully binding as it intends to be.

Moreover, international laws or international-based jurisdiction gathers several criticism since it tends to overpass or take over sovereignty from the state. There are even certain occasions when the rights set by the two covenants and can be reflected in the Universal declaration, can be derogated or taken away. This happens especially during State Emergencies and Dictatorship during ‘martial law’ (Human Rights and Constitutional Rights, 2008). These instances can be reflected on Canadian Constitution and India’s Constitution.

Rights can be limited with respect to emergency situations in the State such as internal conflicts. The derogation of laws is intended to stabilize the economy and society through certain precautions and actions. Most of the rights that can be derogated include the freedom of speech and thought. Such infringements of rights are justified in the basis of preventing violation of the rights of other people or the general public. Works Cited: Devine, C. , Hansen, C. R. , Wilde, R. and Poole, H. Human Rights: The Essential


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