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OADH 2070 - International Human Rights Law : From Theory to Practice

Type d'enseignement : Seminar

Semester : Autumn 2017-2018

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English

Voir les plans de cours et bibliographies

Pre-requisite

While there is no formal pre-requisite to attend this course, the lecture is based on key public international law (PIL) notions and legal concepts. Students who have never studied public international law are thus strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with the subject of PIL by using one of the main textbooks (Brownlie, Shaw or Cassese) prior to the course and to refer to it throughout the course if need be.

Course Description

This course aims to provide students with an overview of the instruments, substantive norms, procedures, and implementation mechanisms pertaining to the international and regional protection frameworks of human rights. It is also designed to explore some of the key contemporary issues in the field of human rights, from the extraterritorial application of IHRL, such as in the context of the use of drones, and the interplay between related norms of international law, in particular IHL and ICL to the debate over “the end of human rights” and increasing challenges to the respect and acceptance of those norms. The themes in the course include a brief history of the development of human rights law, the international and regional human rights systems, the meaning and scope of some specific human rights, including the right to life, the prohibition of torture and other cruel and inhuman treatment, freedom of expression and freedom of conscience and religion and the prohibition of discrimination, as well as the application of human rights in times of armed conflict and some special focus on the documentation and investigation of alleged human rights violations and the controversy related to the use of force by States to protect human rights. The course will provide students with both the necessary theoretical knowledge as well as with an exposure to the practice of human rights, including challenges related to the interpretation and application of those norms to specific cases and the use of human rights law methodology and sources to build a compelling argument.

Teachers

BOUTRUCHE, Théo (Conseiller juridique pour le Programme Moyen-Orient et Afrique du Nord)

Pedagogical format

The course will provide students with both the necessary theoretical knowledge as well as with an exposure to the practice of human rights, including challenges related to the interpretation and application of those norms to specific cases and the use of human rights law methodology and sources to build a compelling argument.

Course validation

Students will be required to submit a research paper, focusing on a contemporary human rights issue for which they will have to argue two different or opposing positions (50%). At the end of the course, there will be a take-home exam to be completed in a 24-hour period on a date fixed by agreement (50%).

Required reading

1. lias Bantekas and Lutz Oette, International Human Rights Law and Practice, CUP, Cambridge, 2013 (there is also a second edition published in Sept. 2016). Required readings include the parts referred to in the outline. However the book provides a good overview of the subject.

Additional required reading

  • 1. Rhona Smith, Textbook on International Humans Rights, 7th ed., Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015.
  • 2. Ph. Alston and Ryan Goodman, International Human Rights, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012.
  • 3. Susan Marks and Andrew Clapham, International Human Rights Lexicon, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005
  • 4. On-line Resources
  • All international treaties and other international instruments can be found on the websites of the relevant organisations or from international law databases (many free of charge). Some of the most useful home pages are listed below, but this is just a guide.
  • • International Human Rights Lexicon: http://www.internationalhumanrightslexicon.org
  • • University of Minnesota Human Rights Library: http://www1.umn.edu/humanrts
  • • International Law Cases and Reports (hosted by Lauterpacht Research Centre for International Law): http://www.lcil.cam.ac.uk/research_links/international-law-cases-and-reports
  • • UN OHCHR: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Pages/WelcomePage.aspx

Plans de cours et bibliographies