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Universality of Human Rights - Essay Example

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The Taliban government, in May 2000, ordered the stoning of women to death on the charges of adultery. Likewise, Britain offered refuge to two women to save them from flogging and stoning as they had been charged of committing adultery in Pakistan…
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Universality of Human Rights
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Download file to see previous pages Article 7 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) states that “no one shall be subject to cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment" – according to which the world rejects stoning and flogging, but not death penalties by electrocution and lethal injections. Another UN convention that disregards all forms of discrimination against the women disallows all what Taliban does to the women. While the religious zealots in the East question the degradation of western women in the form of pornography, lesbianism, prostitution and other forms of social evils. The west protects it in the names of its freedoms. Despite several Security Council resolutions, there has been no action against the Israeli blatant human violations. Therefore, over the last 65 years, the same question is raised again and again: are human rights universal? If yes, to what extent?1 HUMAN RIGHTS “Human rights are rights inherent to all human beings, whatever our nationality, place of residence, sex, national or ethnic origin, color, religion, language, or any other status.” The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights proposes that the human rights are absolute, undeniable, equal, non-discriminatory and interdependent. It states that these rights are an inseparable part of a person living in any part of the world. Therefore, it promotes it universality and argues that this ‘universality’ is the backbone of the international covenants of human rights. 2 UNIVERSALITY OF HUMAN RIGHTS International Law recognizes this universality of the human rights. It establishes the fact that the human rights are natural born rights “for all without distinction”. This universality is itself embodied in the name “Universal Declaration of Human Rights” and in the language of the charter. The preamble of the UN charter of human rights states this universality in the words “common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations". The West propagates this universal nature of the rights and establishes that these rights are owned for every men and women in every corner of the world.3 History pays homage to the West for development of the Human rights. The idea picks up in the minds of the enlightened philosophers in the old Greece, followed by the Romans through their Catholic Church and then moves up to the Northern Europe and Northern America. It develops its firm roots in the shape of Magna Carta in 1215 in Britain, in the shape of American Declaration of Independence in 1776 in America and in the shape of French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen in 1789 in France. The French Declaration was outspoken in its words for the development of the human rights. The opening words of the document stirred the world, “The representatives of the French people, organized in National Assembly, considering that ignorance, forgetfulness, or contempt of the rights of man are the sole causes of public misfortunes and of the corruption of governments, have resolved to set forth in a solemn declaration the natural, inalienable, and sacred rights of man.”4 Nonetheless, many historians opinioned that the development of universal human rights surged in the recent history with the codification of the International Law since the end of the Second World War. The formation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948 and the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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