Tag Archives: human rights
25 June 2014
Last year, the British government approved the export of GBP 1.6bn worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia, which makes the Saudi market the UK’s biggest arms market. The export of GBP 51m worth of arms to Egypt has also been approved by the United Kingdom. These figures derive from government reports and were assembled by the Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT), which estimates that last year the UK approved the export of in total GBP 2bn worth of weapons to oppressive governments. (more…)
Source: The Guardian | Saudis and Egypt among biggest markets for UK arms despite human rights breaches
Source: The Guardian | Egypt’s secret prison: ‘disappeared’ face torture in Azouli military jail
2 April 2014
David Jason Karp has recently published Responsibility for Human Rights: Transnational Corporations in Imperfect States at Cambridge University Press.
According to the abstract, the book ‘provides an original theoretical analysis of which global actors are responsible for human rights, and why. It does this through an evaluation of the different reasons according to which such responsibilities might be assigned: legalism, universalism, capacity and publicness. The book marshals various arguments that speak in favour of and against assigning “responsibility for human rights” to any state or non-state actor. (…) David Karp argues that relevantly public actors have specific human rights responsibility. However, states can be less public, and non-state actors can be more public, than might seem apparent at first glance.’
Source: CUP | Responsibility for Human Rights: Transnational Corporations in Imperfect States | David Jason Karp | March 2014
11 November 2013
The Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe published a report on the accountability of international organisations for human rights violations. The report, written by Rapporteur Mr. José Maria Beneyto, Spain, Group of the European People’s Party, identifies lacunae in the protection of individuals against human rights infringements by international organisations. By virtue of the separate legal personalities of international organisations, their member states are in general not responsible for their acts. This opens an accountability gap, where the conferral of legal personality to international organisations is not accompanied by effective accountability mechanisms. Additionally, member states can use the organisations as a shield from liability. The report notes that the most serious challenges are the lack of fora where the individual could implement accountability of international organisations, as well as procedural obstacles, such as immunity before national courts.
The report offers a number of suggestions in response to these problems. For example, it suggests that organisations should waive immunity when it is not required to ensure the independent fulfillment of its functions. Additionally, the report urges international organisations to establish internal mechanisms for accountability of human rights violations.
Source: Council of Europe | Parliamentary Assembly | Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights | Accountability of international organisations for human rights violations
5 November 2013
The UN working group on the use of mercenaries says there is a need for an international agreement to regulate the use and activities of private military, as national legislation is not sufficient. The use of private militaries creates risks for human rights, says Anton Kats, the Chairman-Rapporteur of the working group.
Among the problems with using these private militaries are the lack of effective and transparent mechanism and remedies for human rights violations and difficultly ensuring accountability for such violations of human rights. Although there are initiatives such as the International Code of Conduct, which has been incorporated by some states and companies to regulate the use of private militaries, they are not legally binding and thus are not enough to solve these problems.
Source: UN News Centre | UN expert group cites need for global instrument regulating private security companies
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1 February 2013
States should not recognise an unlawful situation resulting from Israel’s violations of international law in the occupied territories, and states should take appropriate measures to make sure that business enterprises that are domiciled in their territory – that conduct activities in or related to the settlements – respect human rights. These are some of the recommendations in the advance copy of the Report of the independent international fact-finding mission to investigate the implications of the Israeli settlements on the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights of the Palestinian people throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem.
The report also calls on private companies to assess the human rights impact of their activities, and to take all necessary steps to ensure they are not adversely impacting the human rights of the Palestinian People, in accordance with international law, as well as the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.
Source: Human Rights Council | Report of the independent international fact-finding mission to investigate the implications of the Israeli settlements on the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights of the Palestinian people throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem