Chapter

Introduction<sup>*</sup> From Human Rights as General Norms and a State’s Right to Opt Out, Reservations and Objections to Human Rights Conventions

Rosalyn Higgins Dbe Qc

in Themes and Theories

Published in print August 2009 | ISBN: 9780198262350
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682322 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198262350.003.0039
Introduction* From Human Rights as General Norms and a State’s Right to Opt Out, Reservations and Objections to Human Rights Conventions

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On March 4, 1994, the British Institute of International and Comparative Law held a timely and important conference on the question of Reservations to Human Rights Treaties. The practice of states making reservations had recently seemed, in several human rights treaties, to present new aspects that required analysis. The matter is extremely complex. At the heart of it is the balance to be struck between the legitimate role of states to protect their sovereign interests and the legitimate role of the treaty bodies to promote the effective guarantee of human rights. The applicable international law requires the most careful analysis. The British Institute sought to provide that legal analysis through a range of commissioned conference papers, which are now gathered in a book entitled Human Rights as General Norms and a State’s Right to Opt Out. The United States, the United Kingdom, and France all voice concern at the suggestion that ‘provisions in the Covenant that represent customary international law may not be the subject of reservations’.

Keywords: reservations; human rights treaties; sovereign interests; human rights; international law; United States; United Kingdom; France

Chapter.  6735 words. 

Subjects: Public International Law

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