The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Armed Conflicts: From Fragmentation to Complexity
Anuário Brasileiro de Direito Internacional, Vol. 2, pp. 48-67, 2009
20 Pages Posted: 11 Dec 2009
Date Written: June 18, 2009
Born out of the horror of war, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights seems to leave outside any traces of its bellicose ancestry. As a figure of the intimate relationship between the State and its citizens, Human Rights Law reports to the sole domestic sphere of States. Between a Law of War as the perfect expression of States’ sovereignty and an international community still in its infancy, the UDHR seemed to be able to “guide” men and nations only in those periods when the law of armed conflict would not apply. However, the Tadic case shows us that the Declaration has, in practice, played a much more comprehensive role, including the development of the law of armed conflict. The pre-war mainly bilateral scheme was gradually supplanted by a multilateralism which tends to fragmentation, even complexity. Therefore, during the XXth century, the gradual replacement of the “State-sovereignty-oriented approach” by a “human-being-oriented approach” has highlighted the existence of a revolution, a paradigm shift. This new vision of the relationship between human rights and the law of armed conflict enable us to show the existence of a common goal between these two normative corpuses. Therefore we would demonstrate that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was the anchor of this revolution.
Keywords: Universal Declaration of Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law, Human Rights, Fragmentation, Complexity
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