Litigating Transnational Human Rights Obligations
Edited by Mark Gibney, Wouter Vandenhole
To Be Published December 1st 2013 by Routledge – 256 pages
Human rights have traditionally been framed in a vertical perspective with the duties of States confined to their own citizens or residents. Obligations beyond this territorial space have been viewed as either being nonexistent or minimalistic at best. However, the territorial paradigm has now been seriously challenged in recent years in part because of the increasing awareness of the ability of States and other actors to impact human rights far from home both positively and negatively. In response to this awareness various legal principles have come into existence setting out some transnational human rights obligations of varying degrees. However, not withstanding these initiatives, judicial institutions and monitoring bodies continue to show an enormous hesitancy in moving beyond a territorial reading of international human rights law.
This book addresses the issue in an innovative and challenging way by crafting legally sound hypothetical "judgments" from a number of adjudicatory fora. The judgments are based on real world situations where extraterritorial or transnational issues have emerged, and draw on existing international human rights law, albeit a progressive interpretation of this law. The book shows that there are a number of judicial and quasi-judicial systems where transnational human rights claims can, and should be enforced. These include: the World Trade Organization; the International Court of Justice; the regional human rights tribunal; domestic courts; and the UN treaty bodies. Each hypothetical judgment is accompanied by detailed commentary placing it in context in order to show how international human rights law can address issues of a transnational character.
The book will be of interest to human scholars and lawyers, practitioners, activists and aid officials.
1. Introduction: transnational human rights obligations, Mark Gibney and Wouter Vandenhole Part 1: International Economic Governance Structures 2. Import bans and the protection of public morals (World Trade Organization), Claire Buggenhoudt 3. Measures Affecting Trade in Biofuel Crops (World Trade Organization), Alexia Herwig 4.The World Bank (IFC) and investment (World Bank Compliance Advisor Ombudsman), Joss Saunders Part 2: United Nations Human Rights Bodies5. Putting an end to victims without borders: Litigating a hypothetical transnational ‘child pornography’ case (Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child), Gamze Erdem Türkelli 6. Extraterritorial Obligations and the Right to Health (Optional Protocol to the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights), Rachel Hammonds and Gorik Ooms 7. Economic, social and cultural rights of Nuba peoples (Optional Protocol to the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights), Jernej Letnar Černič 8. "Only the Little People Pay Taxes": Tax Havens and Switzerland’s Extraterritorial Obligations to Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights), Nicholas Lusiani 9. Extraterritorial Obligations and Parallel Responsibility - Labour Rights in a Transnational Perspective (Optional Protocol, Inter-state Complaint Procedure, Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights), Arne Vandenbogaerde 10. Famer’s suicides in India (International Court of Justice), Amita Punj 11. Climate Change (Inter-state Complaint Procedure, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights), Margreet Wewerinke 12. Is there an obligation to refrain from withdrawing development assistance for primary education for children with disabilities? (Optional Protocol, Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities), Wouter Vandenhole 13. Empty Domestic Remedies versus Enforcing Extra-Territorial Obligations: Lessons from the Mubende Case in Uganda (International Human Rights Court), Christopher Mbazira Part 3: Regional Courts and Monitoring Bodies14. Activities of a transnational company and the implementation of a trade/investment agreement (African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights), Sisay Alemahu 15. The Public-Private Duties Dichotomy and Extraterritorial Violations in the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights (African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights), Takele Bulto 16. Corporate Human Rights Abuses under the African Charter: the Case of Diamond Mining (African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights), Khulekani Moyo 17. Economic crime, asset tracing and States' Extraterritorial human rights obligations, Michael Wabwile 18. Land Grabbing in South America (Inter-American Human Rights Commission), Ana Maria Suarez-Franco 19. Bail-out agreements under the European Social Charter (European Social Rights Committee), Matthias Sant’Ana 20. Extraterritorial jurisdiction for military interventions by states outside the context of occupation (European Court of Human Rights), Nico Moons Part 4: Domestic Courts 21. Extraordinary Rendition (U.S. Supreme Court), Mark Gibney 22. Air and Water Pollution, Benedict Wray
Mark Gibney is the Belk Distinguished Professor at University of North Carolina -Asheville. Since 1984, Gibney has directed the Political Terror Scale (PTS), which measures levels of physical integrity violations in more than 185 countries (www.politicalterrorscale.org).
Wouter Vandenhole holds the UNICEF Chair in Children's Rights at the Faculty of Law of the University of Antwerp (Belgium) and is the Co-Director of the Law and Development Research Group.