POLSCI 1G06 Lecture Notes - Lecture 9: Humanitarian Intervention, Collective Action, United Nations Charter

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Political Science 1G06 2013 II Lecture 9a Human rights
-1. Is the United Nations (in its current form) capable of promoting and
protecting human rights?
-2. Assuming that the United Nations is flawed but that it can be
reformed to make it more effective
oHow can Human rights be defended in a self-consistent way?
-A number of competing legal principles are built into the United
Nations Charter:
-Principle 1: State sovereignty and its corollary non-intervention
-According to the Preamble of the UN Charter, one of the primary
purposes of the organization is to “save succeeding generations from
the scourge of war”
-One way to do this is to stringently restrict international aggression
-Aggression by states acting alone: Article 2(4): “All Members shall
refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force
against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state,
or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United
-Interference by states acting together: Article 2(7): “Nothing
contained in the present Charter shall authorize the United Nations to
intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic
jurisdiction of any state or shall require the Members to submit such
matters to settlement under the present Charter”
-There is a proviso at the end of 2(7) which testifies to a second
principle contained within the Charter
-Principle 2 - Collective security
-Finishing 2(7): “this principle shall not prejudice the application of
enforcement measures under Chapter VII.”
-Chapter VII: “The Security Council shall determine the existence of
any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression and
shall make recommendations, or decide what measures shall be taken
in accordance with Articles 41 and 42, to maintain or restore
international peace and security
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