Human Rights

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UN General Assembly Resolution 66/253, Syria

The UN General Assembly passed this resolution on February 16, 2012. The press release states, "Strongly condemning continued widespread and systematic human rights violations by the Syrian authorities, the General Assembly today voted overwhelmingly to call on both the Government and allied forces and armed groups "to stop all violence or reprisals immediately".

Adopting an Arab-backed resolution by a recorded vote of 137 in favour to 12 against, with 17 abstentions, the Assembly expressed grave concern at the deteriorating situation in Syria, and condemned a raft of violations carried out by the authorities, such as the use of force against civilians, the killing and persecution of protestors and journalists, and sexual violence and ill-treatment, including against children."

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Conservatives, Liberals, and Human Rights

Authors: Mark P. Lagon and William F. Schulz
Policy Review

Mark P. Lagon and William F. Schulz take a closer look at how liberals and conservatives understand and advance human rights and lay out options for creating a more unified human rights movement focused on resilience and creative policies rather than dogmatism.

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Observations by the United States of America on the Relationship Between Climate Change and Human Rights, 2008

The United States submitted these observations on the relationship between climate change and human rights to the UN Human Rights Council in 2008. The observations were "requested by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in its communications dated June 3 and August 21, 2008…in accordance with Human Rights Council (HRC) resolution 7/23, in order to conduct "a detailed analytical study on the relationship between climate change and human rights."

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UN Global Compact Ten Core Principles

The UN Global Compact was launched on July 26, 2000 with nine principles. A tenth was added on June 24, 2004. The UN states, "The UN Global Compact's ten principles in the areas of human rights, labour, the environment and anti-corruption enjoy universal consensus and are derived from The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, The International Labour Organization's Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, The Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, and The United Nations Convention Against Corruption.

The UN Global Compact asks companies to embrace, support and enact, within their sphere of influence, a set of core values in the areas of human rights, labour standards, the environment and anti-corruption."

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Anti-Homosexuality Bill, Uganda

This proposed anti-homosexualitybill was introduced in Uganda's Parliament in October 2009; among its provisions, it states that "A person who commits the offence of aggravated homosexuality shall be liable on conviction to suffer death." The bill has not been voted upon.

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Report of the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry, December 2011

The Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry presented this report in November 23, 2011, with final revisions made by December 10, 2011. The report investigates potential human rights abuses in Bahrain during the protests that took place in February 2011, part of the Arab Uprisings across the Middle East. In Bahrain, the report is known as the Bassiouni Commission, as it was led by Professor M. Cherif Bassiouni, who investigated war crimes in Bosnia and Libya for the United Nations.

See more in Bahrain; Human Rights; Political Movements and Protests