International human rights law

With the adoption by the UN General Assembly of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on December 10, 1948, the international movement in the field of human rights intensified. The Declaration, which is “a task to which all peoples and states should strive”, for the first time in the history of mankind, fixed the basic civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights that should be available to every person. Over time, these rights have been recognized by the general public as basic human rights norms that everyone must respect and protect. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, together with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and its two Additional Protocols, as well as the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, constitute the so-called International Bill of Human Rights.

A number of international human rights treaties and other similar instruments adopted since 1945 have legally established human rights and contributed to the development of the international human rights machinery. At the regional level, other instruments have been adopted that meet the needs of a particular region in the field of human rights and are adapted to specific protection mechanisms. The constitutions and other national laws of most states have incorporated basic human rights. While the foundation of international human rights law is international treaties and customary law, other instruments such as internationally accepted declarations, guidelines and principles contribute to the understanding, application and development of the law. For human rights to be respected, the rule of law must be ensured at the national and international levels. International human rights law places certain obligations on states. By becoming a party to international treaties, the state assumes an obligation to respect, protect and fulfill human rights. Respect for human rights implies non-interference by the state in the exercise of human rights and refraining from restricting them. The obligation to protect human rights requires the state to prevent violations of rights. The fulfillment of human rights obliges the state to guarantee the unhindered exercise of basic human rights.

By ratifying international human rights treaties, the state undertakes to adopt internal measures and laws in accordance with these treaties. In the event that the state fails to cope with situations of human rights violations, individual complaint mechanisms and procedures are available at the regional and international levels to ensure that local authorities respect, apply and implement human rights.



1st Year Student of the Faculty of
International Law of the Institute of
International Relations of the 
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan.


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