Issue 33: The prospect of Kofi Annan serving a second term as Secretary-General of the UN

Though Kofi Annan still has over two years to go as United Nations Secretary-General, talk about a possible second term for Annan has already begun. Analysis: In many respects, the Secretary-General’s job is an unenviable one. As the chief administrative officer of the United Nations, the Secretary-General …

Issue 32: ECOSOC asks its NGO committee to revisit one of its recommendations and Iran presents a report to the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) has ordered the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations to revisit its recommendation that Christian Solidarity International have its status revoked. Analysis: Giving the Committee until mid-September to come up with a new recommendation on the fate of Christian …

Issue 29: The 1999 UN Commission on Human Rights resolution on the right to democracy

In its final week, the 1999 UN Commission on Human Rights adopted a resolution on the right to democracy. The international community has affirmed for the first time that democracy fosters respect for human rights and humanitarian standards. Analysis: The Commission on Human Rights is not alone in recognizing the …

Issue 27: NATO’s use of force in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia

On the final day of the UN Commission on Human Rights, Mary Robinson, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, criticized NATO’s use of force in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, saying: “Under the [UN International Criminal] Tribunal’s statute, the Prosecutor may investigate war crimes committed by …

Issue 25: This year’s UN Commission on Human Rights structural problems and political gamesmanship

This year’s UN Commission on Human Rights is more than halfway finished. Structural problems and political gamesmanship may preclude the Commission from really fulfilling its mandate. Analysis: In years past, the Commission made enormous contributions to the recognition of human rights. It produced the …

Issue 24: Human rights as a necessary element for economic stability and the prevention of armed conflict

The 55th Session of the UN Commission on Human Rights opened in Geneva on Monday with the election of Irish Ambassador Anne Anderson as Chairman. A central theme to emerge has been human rights and world stability. This theme was expressed in terms of (1) human rights as a necessary factor for long term economic …

Issue 21: Amnesty International’s report to the upcoming UN Commission on Human Rights

Amnesty International’s report to the upcoming UN Commission on Human Rights calls on the Commission to give priority attention to countries where human rights abuses are “grave, persistent and/or widespread.” The targeted countries are Algeria, Burundi, Cambodia, Democratic Republic of Congo, …

Issue 20: The evolution in the legitimacy of the use of force according to international law

The world’s reluctance to act in the face of continuing military aggression in Kosovo prompts a consideration of the evolution in the legitimacy of the use of force. Analysis: The Western liberal ethic – or Judeo-Christian value system – teaches us to abhor violence. Consequently, many of us recoil …