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UN Human Rights Treaties

Travaux Préparatoires

International Conventions

Ratifying countries commit to pursuing all appropriate means of eliminating all forms of racial discrimination. The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination monitors its implementation in party states.

The work of formalizing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights into a legally binding international treaty eventually resulted in two separate treaties. The ICCPR is one of the two, and embodies fundamental human rights as traditionally understood, such as self-determination, freedom from discrimination, freedom of movement, and prohibitions on torture or inhuman treatment.

The ICESCR is the other treaty that resulted from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. While it shares initial articles with the ICCPR, the remainder of the ICESCR focuses on labor, economic, educational, family, health and cultural rights.

CEDAW aims to eliminate in party states all discrimination against women so as to ensure de jure and de facto equality with men. One of CEDAW’s primary requirements is for states to ensure equality through constitutions or other similar legislation.

The Convention against Torture provides a specific definition of torture and established a Committee against Torture that monitors party states’ efforts to abide by the prohibitions provided in the treaty.

Under the CRC, states commit to the well-being of children by establishing a distinct set of rights and standards for children.

The Migrant Workers Convention establishes that many of the rights ensured by other human rights treaties apply to migrant workers specifically. It also establishes rights particular to migrant workers. The Committee on Migrant Workers monitors its implementation.

Under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, party states agree to not just ensure, but also promote full human rights for everyone regardless of any disability. The convention not only requires states to establish these rights, but also to promote awareness of the capabilities and dignity of people with disabilities.

The Convention on Enforced Disappearance defines “enforced disappearance” and requires party states to investigate instances that meet the definition and to prohibit enforced disappearances in their criminal law. The Committee on Enforced Disappearances monitors implementation of the Convention.