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Legal Research Links and Resources

Country Specific Human Rights Law Sites

 

A - D Countries

E - I Countries

J - R Countries

S - Z Countries

 

Contents

 

1.     Legal Research Primer

2.     Selected International Human Rights Instruments

3.     Selected International Venues for Enforcing Human Rights Law

4.     Selected International/National Human Rights Law Organizations

5.     International Courts

6.     International Law Sites

7.     Key Internet Sources

                       

Legal Research Primer

 

I. Introduction


This section will attempt to provide a guide to the ever expanding area of international human rights law. The focus will be on the electronic sources available for this topic, regardless of the format (CD-ROM, the Web, and commercial online services). This section will include general tips for doing research as well as for locating necessary documents and materials. The scope of this section will encompass both primary and secondary sources (including documents from non-governmental organizations). The emphasis will be on English-language materials, but the availability of resources in other languages is noted. 

 

II. Brief History


The concepts of humanitarian intervention, self-determination, and providing relief to the wounded and other victims of armed conflicts can be viewed as the roots of human rights law. Modern international human rights law dates from World War II and its aftermath. The United Nations Charter, signed June 26, 1945, sought to acknowledge the importance of human rights and established it as a matter of international concern. Article 1(3) specifically states that one of the purposes of the UN is "[t]o achieve international cooperation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion". Articles 55 and 56 of the Charter set out the basic human rights obligations of the UN and its member states. 

 

The rights and obligations enumerated in the Charter were codified in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This was the first instrument to really articulate the fundamental rights and freedoms of all people. Following the Declaration, the UN Commission on Human Rights drafted the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Together, these three documents (with the Optional Protocols to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights) comprise the International Bill of Human Rights

 

III. Methodology of Human Rights Research 


When first starting out, researching international human rights law can be a confusing mess of treaties and documents. The materials (for the most part) are not set out in a coherent, well-organized fashion. The sources of information range from recognized treaty law to more ephemeral materials from non-governmental organizations. There are a few things to keep in mind when doing human rights research: the interdisciplinary nature of the topic; the complexity of the topic and the materials; and the challenge of locating and accessing materials issued by a variety of organizations. The researcher needs to be resourceful, creative, and never become daunted by the task. Just when you are ready to give up is when you might find the needed material. 

When first starting out, researching international human rights law can be a confusing mess of treaties and documents. The materials (for the most part) are not set out in a coherent, well-organized fashion. The sources of information range from recognized treaty law to more ephemeral materials from non-governmental organizations. There are a few things to keep in mind when doing human rights research: the interdisciplinary nature of the topic; the complexity of the topic and the materials; and the challenge of locating and accessing materials issued by a variety of organizations. The researcher needs to be resourceful, creative, and never become daunted by the task. Just when you are ready to give up is when you might find the needed material. 
 

IV. Where to Start 

 

1.      Bibliographic Databases and Online Catalogs 


Human rights law and related commentaries are growing at an amazing rate. Therefore, the best place to begin any research is by checking to see what is available on your topic. Today, we can search the catalogs of our own libraries as well as catalogs of libraries from around the country (and even around the world). The two major bibliographic databases in the United States are RLG and OCLC. The RLG Union Catalog (the Research Libraries Group) (http://www.rlg.org/) contains the holdings of some of the major academic institutions such as University of California at Berkeley, Columbia University, Harvard University, and Yale University. Another advantage to RLIN is that the Dag Hammarskjöld Library (United Nations Library) has allowed their records to be included in the EUREKA (RLIN) database from 1979 to the present with quarterly updates (http://www.library.yale.edu:80/un/un2a5.htm). WorldCat (the Online Computer Library Center) includes the records of many academic institutions, law firm libraries, and smaller libraries in the U.S. Some large libraries have their holdings on both systems. Most bibliographic databases and online catalogs use standard Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH). The Library of Congress Classification Outline is available on the web. Since the print LCSH volumes are a bit unwieldy, most catalogs provide keyword searching. Keyword searching allows the user to locate some items on point and then determine the appropriate subject heading. The following are the most commonly used subject headings for locating information on human rights. 

 

Human rights law and related commentaries are growing at an amazing rate. Therefore, the best place to begin any research is by checking to see what is available on your topic. Today, we can search the catalogs of our own libraries as well as catalogs of libraries from around the country (and even around the world). The two major bibliographic databases in the United States are RLG and OCLC. The RLG Union Catalog (the Research Libraries Group) (http://www.rlg.org/) contains the holdings of some of the major academic institutions such as University of California at Berkeley, Columbia University, Harvard University, and Yale University. Another advantage to RLIN is that the Dag Hammarskjöld Library (United Nations Library) has allowed their records to be included in the EUREKA (RLIN) database from 1979 to the present with quarterly updates (http://www.library.yale.edu:80/un/un2a5.htm). WorldCat (the Online Computer Library Center) includes the records of many academic institutions, law firm libraries, and smaller libraries in the U.S. Some large libraries have their holdings on both systems. Most bibliographic databases and online catalogs use standard Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH). The Library of Congress Classification Outline is available on the web. Since the print LCSH volumes are a bit unwieldy, most catalogs provide keyword searching. Keyword searching allows the user to locate some items on point and then determine the appropriate subject heading. The following are the most commonly used subject headings for locating information on human rights. 
 

2.      Research Guides and Bibliographies 


There are many guides and bibliographies available to direct the human rights researcher. Many of these guides can be located through bibliographic databases by using the following subject headings: HUMAN RIGHTS--LEGAL RESEARCH; HUMAN RIGHTS--BIBLIOGRAPHY or HUMAN RIGHTS--LIBRARY RESOURCES. Periodical indexes are also an excellent source for locating research guides and bibliographies. 

 

There are many guides and bibliographies available to direct the human rights researcher. Many of these guides can be located through bibliographic databases by using the following subject headings: HUMAN RIGHTS--LEGAL RESEARCH; HUMAN RIGHTS--BIBLIOGRAPHY or HUMAN RIGHTS--LIBRARY RESOURCES. Periodical indexes are also an excellent source for locating research guides and bibliographies. 
 

3.      Periodical Indexes


One of the best places to begin research on a human rights topic is with periodical literature. Articles will provide information about a topic, provide bibliographies and lists of sources, and are often useful for locating citations and other information about publications and documents.  To locate other relevant indexes, use the following Library of Congress Subject Headings: LAW--PERIODICALS--INDEXES or SOCIAL SCIENCES--PERIODICALS--INDEXES.

 

One of the best places to begin research on a human rights topic is with periodical literature. Articles will provide information about a topic, provide bibliographies and lists of sources, and are often useful for locating citations and other information about publications and documents.  To locate other relevant indexes, use the following Library of Congress Subject Headings: LAW--PERIODICALS--INDEXES or SOCIAL SCIENCES--PERIODICALS--INDEXES.

V. Primary Sources 

 

Compilations of Human Rights Instruments 


International human rights law is treaty based. These treaties are promulgated by international organizations such as the United Nations and its specialized agencies, the Council of Europe, and other organizations. Therefore, locating the necessary instruments is usually the first place to begin research in this area. A good strategy is to begin with the body that promulgated the instrument. 

This section will outline the major electronic sources for human rights instruments as well as the sources that provide information about the issuing body itself. 

 

1. United Nations (UN) 


Compilations of instruments can be found in a variety of sources. While there is an abundance of paper sources available, the Web also offers many sites for obtaining the full text of the most important instruments.  Many electronic sources offer an advantage over the paper by allowing a researcher to search the full text of the document. Even if there is no searching mechanism available directly at the web site, certain Web browsers offer some basic finding features that allow for word string searches. 

 

Compilations of instruments can be found in a variety of sources. While there is an abundance of paper sources available, the Web also offers many sites for obtaining the full text of the most important instruments.  Many electronic sources offer an advantage over the paper by allowing a researcher to search the full text of the document. Even if there is no searching mechanism available directly at the web site, certain Web browsers offer some basic finding features that allow for word string searches. 
 

2. International Labour Organization (ILO)


The ILO was established on June 28, 1919 by Part XII of the Treaty of Versailles. Its Constitution became operative on April 11, 1919. It was recognized by the UN as a specialized agency in 1946. Among the issues to which the ILO devotes itself are: hours of work, adequate living wages, protection of the worker, recognition of the principle of freedom of association, recognition of the principle of equal renumeration for work of equal value. The ILO has adopted many conventions over the years, several of which relate to the area of human rights. 

 

The ILO was established on June 28, 1919 by Part XII of the Treaty of Versailles. Its Constitution became operative on April 11, 1919. It was recognized by the UN as a specialized agency in 1946. Among the issues to which the ILO devotes itself are: hours of work, adequate living wages, protection of the worker, recognition of the principle of freedom of association, recognition of the principle of equal renumeration for work of equal value. The ILO has adopted many conventions over the years, several of which relate to the area of human rights. 
 

3. United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) 


UNESCO is a specialized agency of the UN. Its Constitution was adopted by the London Conference in November 1945, and entered into effect on 4 November 1946. The main objective of UNESCO is to contribute to peace and security in the world by promoting collaboration among nations through education, science, culture and communication in order to further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and human rights and fundamental freedoms. 

 

UNESCO is a specialized agency of the UN. Its Constitution was adopted by the London Conference in November 1945, and entered into effect on 4 November 1946. The main objective of UNESCO is to contribute to peace and security in the world by promoting collaboration among nations through education, science, culture and communication in order to further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and human rights and fundamental freedoms. 
 

4. United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) 


The institution for dealing with refugees has a long history. The first such institution was created in 1921 by the League of Nations. The Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees took over the duties of the earlier organizations in 1951. The office was mandated under the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, 189 U.N.T.S. 150, entered into force April 22, 1954. Refugees are defined as those who have fled or are outside their country of origin because of a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of their race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, and who are unable or unwilling to return. 

 

The institution for dealing with refugees has a long history. The first such institution was created in 1921 by the League of Nations. The Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees took over the duties of the earlier organizations in 1951. The office was mandated under the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, 189 U.N.T.S. 150, entered into force April 22, 1954. Refugees are defined as those who have fled or are outside their country of origin because of a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of their race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, and who are unable or unwilling to return. 
 

5. Organization of African Unity (OAU) and the African Union (AU)


The OAU was established on May 25, 1963 by the representatives of 23 African nations. Its aims are to promote African unity, development, eradicate all forms of colonialism, and harmonize economic and social policies. One of the primary documents related to human rights is the African (Banjul) Charter on Human and Peoples‘ Rights.

 

The OAU was established on May 25, 1963 by the representatives of 23 African nations. Its aims are to promote African unity, development, eradicate all forms of colonialism, and harmonize economic and social policies. One of the primary documents related to human rights is the African (Banjul) Charter on Human and Peoples‘ Rights.
 

The OAU was replaced by the African Union on May 26, 2002. The mandate and scope of the AU is much more broad than that of the OAU.

 

6. Organization of American States (OAS)


The OAS is a regional inter-governmental organization and includes all sovereign nations of the Americas. The branch of the OAS which deals with human rights is commonly referred to as the Inter-American Human Rights System. It has two primary legal sources: Charter of the OAS and American Convention on Human Rights

 

The OAS is a regional inter-governmental organization and includes all sovereign nations of the Americas. The branch of the OAS which deals with human rights is commonly referred to as the Inter-American Human Rights System. It has two primary legal sources: Charter of the OAS and American Convention on Human Rights
 

7. Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) 


Originally known as the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE), this organization became the OSCE in 1994. This is not a strictly European organization since the United States and Canada are also members. The CSCE was created by the Helsinki Final Act in 1975. Two principles outlined in the Act address human rights. Principle VII states "respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief" and principle VIII addresses the "equal rights and self-determination of peoples." 

 

Originally known as the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE), this organization became the OSCE in 1994. This is not a strictly European organization since the United States and Canada are also members. The CSCE was created by the Helsinki Final Act in 1975. Two principles outlined in the Act address human rights. Principle VII states "respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief" and principle VIII addresses the "equal rights and self-determination of peoples." 
 

8. Humanitarian Law


There is much debate as to whether humanitarian law is distinct from human rights law. It can be defined as "the human rights component of the law of war." The principle legal sources are the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the two later protocols

 

There is much debate as to whether humanitarian law is distinct from human rights law. It can be defined as "the human rights component of the law of war." The principle legal sources are the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the two later protocols
 

9. Other Sites


EISIL (Electronic Information System for International Law).  ASIL developed EISIL so that web searchers can easily locate the highest quality primary materials, authoritative web sites and helpful research guides to international law on the Internet. To this end, EISIL has been designed as an open database of authenticated primary and other materials across the breadth of international law, which until now have been scattered in libraries, archives and specialized web sites.  Users can access primary materials and web sites as well as value added information, such as legal citations, summaries of documents, entry into force dates, and more.  See the section of EISIL that focuses on International Human Rights.

 

EISIL (Electronic Information System for International Law).  ASIL developed EISIL so that web searchers can easily locate the highest quality primary materials, authoritative web sites and helpful research guides to international law on the Internet. To this end, EISIL has been designed as an open database of authenticated primary and other materials across the breadth of international law, which until now have been scattered in libraries, archives and specialized web sites.  Users can access primary materials and web sites as well as value added information, such as legal citations, summaries of documents, entry into force dates, and more.  See the section of EISIL that focuses on International Human Rights.
 

VI. Status of Human Rights Instruments


Locating the status of an instrument is of primary importance in international human rights law. The Web has become a primary source for obtaining up-to-date status information.

 

Locating the status of an instrument is of primary importance in international human rights law. The Web has become a primary source for obtaining up-to-date status information.
 

VII. Reservations/Declarations 


This information can sometimes be difficult to locate, especially the most current information. If it is a UN instrument, you are likely to find this information contained in UN documents. Some information is available through electronic sources. 

 

This information can sometimes be difficult to locate, especially the most current information. If it is a UN instrument, you are likely to find this information contained in UN documents. Some information is available through electronic sources. 
 

VIII. Jurisprudence, Case law, Decisions and Reports 

 

This section contains information from adjudicative bodies, like the European Court of Human Rights and the Human Rights Committee.  Keep in mind that not all of this information is available in electronic form. Some of the information is still only available in publications from the issuing body (UN, ILO, etc.) or reprinted in other sources, such as International Legal Materials, Human Rights Law Journal, International Human Rights Reports, etc. 

International Women's Human Rights and Humanitarian Law

Women's Human Rights in the Context of International Law Research

Women's rights, in international law, emerges today as an exciting, rapidly-developing sub-field of international human rights protection. :

Treaties are ... the international equivalent of "legislation" broadly stated, as the basic norm-creating text. The major multilateral treaties may occupy any one of a number of places in a hierarchy of legal authorities depending on the domestic law of the member state. A treaty may be on a par with domestic constitutional law, above it, somewhere between domestic constitutional law and domestic statutory law, or lack validity. In the last case, an enabling or implementing law of the jurisdiction must expressly declare a treaty to be a law of that country. These variations are true for member states of the UN and of the Council of Europe, parent bodies of the most widely-known human rights treaties.

A major step forward in the promotion and protection of international women's rights was the drafting and ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women ( CEDAW ), 1249 U.N.T.S. 13, signed 18 Dec. 1979; entered into force 3 Sept. 1981. Currently there are 97 signatories and 165 parties, according to the status tables reported in Multilateral Treaties Deposited with the Secretary-General , ( this is now a fee-based service to which the library has a subscription; please contact a librarian for the password information).

II. CEDAW and its Optional Protocol

A. UNTS and Womenwatch

The text of CEDAW may be found as cited above in the print version of the United Nations Treaty Series ( New York [etc.] : United Nations, 1947-date) or its new updated electronic version. However, to see the document in a wider, more thoroughly-documented context, an excellent electronic source of background information is the WomenWatch project, which is maintained by the United Nations Division for the Advancement of Women. The Optional Protocol Homepage contains information on the history and current drafting process. The Open-ended Working Group of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) worked hard to establish an enforcement mechanism. Individuals and groups of women would be able to bring complaints under a communications procedure (similar to that already in place for the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and a treaty-monitoring body or committee would be able to use an inquiry procedure to look into alleged abuses or treaty violations in a country that is a party to the Optional Protocol.

Also available at the Womenwatch site is the text of the Optional Protocol with an introductory summary, and a helpful hot-linked list of reports relating to the drafting and discussion of the protocol over the years . There is also a bibliography of literature on the protocol, but this should be supplemented by continuing research in periodical indexes.

The General Assembly adopted the Optional Protocol in October, 1999. It opened for signature in December, 1999. It entered into force 22 December 2002.

B. The Treaty-based and Charter-based Bodies Databases

The United Nations human rights system distinguishes between charter-based bodies, such as the Commission on Human Rights and the Sub-commission on the Promotion and Protection and of Human Rights, and the treaty-based bodies arising under the specific international instruments, of which the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women is the one set up for CEDAW. The Commission has a broader and more basic set of extra-conventional mechanisms for setting up working groups and special rapporteurs for the whole field as a basic concern of the UN from its charter. The committees monitor states parties' compliance with a specific treaty by receiving and responding to reports from those countries and issuing reports on this activity. The UN documentation symbol system assigns E/CN.4 to the Commission and CEDAW/C... and other variations to the treaty body under consideration.

Even before the fully-ratified Optional Protocol was in place, the terms of CEDAW include reporting and monitoring functions which generate a considerable body of UN documentation in line with the standard requirements common to many of the human rights instruments operating under the UN system. To access most of these documents freely on the web, there is a database available through the Human Rights Document Research Guide listed under the Human Rights major section of the UN homepage,.Or, these documents may be viewed by treaty type as well as by country and several other options, including Reports of States Parties (under Article 18 of CEDAW), the Concluding Observations and Comments of the Committee, and General Comments the Committee upon reading a number of reports. .

III. Other Treaties and Instruments of the UN

Other instruments concerned with other aspects of women's rights have been sponsored by the UN. These include the Convention on the Political Rights of Women, New York, 31 March 1953; the Convention on the Nationality of Married Women New York, 20 February 1957; and the. Convention on Consent to Marriage, Minimum Age for Marriage and Registration of Marriages, New York, 10 December 1962. The text location and citation information is available on the treaties site at the UN Homepage

Another related guide in LLRX (Law Library Research Exchange, a webzine) is Marylin J. Raisch, International Family Law: A Selective Resource Guide . Many treaties and sites listed in the guide pertain to women's status, rights, and the relationship of their rights to children's rights.

The Womenwatch Page and the homepage of the Commission on the Status of Women, both cited above, provide numerous links to the various declarations and conferences devoted to the rights of women. These pages are linked one to another; as an example, the second "page" of Womenwatch, contains links to the intergovernmental and treaty bodies, the regional commissions, and the international instruments on women's rights and concerns. These are numerous, but two deserve special treatment: the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women (1993), and the Declaration on the Protection of Women and Children in Emergencies and Armed Conflicts (1974).

IV. Other Intergovernmental Organizations

Organization of American States

Home page:

Specific conventions relating to women's rights (the above URL applies to all of them):

  • Inter-American Convention on the Granting of Civil Rights to Women, (A-45)
  • Original text available only in Spanish)
  • Inter-American Convention on the Granting of Political Rights to Women, (A-44)
  • (Original text available only in Spanish)
  • Inter-American Convention on the Prevention, Punishment and Eradication of Violence Against Women "Convention of Belem do Para", (A-61)

Hague Conference

List of conventions:

Specific conventions relating to women's rights:

Council of Europe

Council of Europe home page:

Council of Europe Conventions home page:

Specific conventions related to women's rights (the above URL applies to all):

  • Convention for the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms (1950)

  • European social charter (revised 1996)

  • European code of social security (revised 1990)

V. Violence against Women

If one clicks on "General Information" at the second page of the large Human Rights section of the overall UN Homepage, one discovers that "Women and Violence" is a topic that merits separate treatment there. This is a helpful summary of UN activity and response in the area and discusses the work of the Special Rapporteur . Documentation exits throughout the UN system, but most readily available through Womenwatch.

VI. Global Conferences

Again, Womenwatch is probably the best "one-stop shopping" for the documents of the Fourth World Conference on Women held in 1995 as well as the "Beijing + 5" follow-up held in June, 2000. The Conference's Final Report as well as The Beijing Platform for Action and the Nairobi Forward-Looking Strategies for the Advancement for Women of 1985. may be also be found on this site.

A "Directory of UN Resources on Gender and Women's Issues" also appears on the Womenwatch site.

UN conferences in general are often preparatory to the drafting and eventual ratification of treaties and as such are considered as part of the "travaux préparatoires" of conventions. Many of them are in the UN document symbol series A/CONF.(number) or E/CONF.(number). Every conference gets a historically unique number. A list of these can be found in the UN's International Law Guide or on its Un-I-Que database. Many documents of a general nature are free from the UN Homepage directly if one clicks on the "UN documents and Maps" button and selects the appropriate major body (General Assembly, Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), Security Council). Bear in mind that the Human Rights Commission reports annually to the ECOSOC, while the major treaty bodies such as the Human Rights Committee for the ICCPR and others would report to the General Assembly. These Official Records are part of the larger UN documentation you can obtain at a depository library or online in the ODS or Official Documents System of the United Nations ( a fee-based subscription service; see a librarian to use it).

VII. Humanitarian law and women

The cases of the international tribunals of the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda are available at the respective websites of the ICTY and ICTR.

But these are not searchable in the kind of expansive, full-text way that Lexis, Westlaw or QL could provide.

For this and many topics on women, periodical indexes and bibliographic databases will be of use. The Index to Legal periodicals and Books, Index to Foreign Legal Periodicals and LegalTrak, all available on CD-ROM , will facilitate such searches. In the larger university catalogue, links to WorldCat, a huge bibliographic database, will locate books, including those not held locally.

The catalogues of other libraries not on the web are also available.

VIII. Women and development as a related topic

The UN databases from the United Nations Development Programme include gender as a "focus area," and there is information there such as the United Nations Inter-Agency Campaign on Women's Human Rights in Latin America and the Caribbean.

IX. Enforcement of Women's Human Rights

A. Jurisprudence

1. Under the treaty bodies In addition to the UN Treaty Bodies database listed and described under section II. B. above, there are other sites which organize the decisions and views of the United Nations and Council of Europe European Human Rights systems analytically by party, country, or subject, including some search engines able to isolate decisions arising under specific articles. Two currently operational but still being developed fully include

2. At the national court level

Searching national case law without a major research library print collection can be difficult, and translations of even the supreme or highest court cases, even constitutional court cases (where they exist) are not usually available.

Lexis provides case law for the U.S., Canada, United Kingdom, as well as Australia, the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights, Ireland, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, and South Africa. Some of these databases are rather selective under license from a publisher. A wonderful internet site to explore for a few free and searchable (and more fee-based) case law databases from foreign jurisdictions would be NYU's site, "Guide to Foreign and International Legal Databases"

This site lists numerous legislative and judicial databases, many of which are free in whole or part. Columbia maintains a foreign constitutional case law database .

X. The European System for the Enforcement of Human Rights, and the EU

Please refer again to Marylin J. Raisch, International Protection of Human Rights Research Guide in this series for discussion of sources for the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (commonly called the European Convention on Human Rights) under the Council of Europe. Both in that court and even in the employment discrimination and labour context of the European Union, cases on gender discrimination exist with implications for the enforcement of international standards.

XI. The International Labour Organisation (ILO)

ILO standards for the employment of women are important and are embodied in recommendations and instruments to which many countries are parties. The ILO website is excellent, and its NATLEX database contains many national labour laws.

Home Page:

ILOLEX: Database of International Labour Standards: Conventions:

ILOLEX: Database of International Labour Standards: Recommendations :

Specific conventions and recommendations relating to women's rights:

XII. Women's Human Rights Resource Page and Selected Journals

The Bora Laskin Law Library Women's Human Rights Resources Page and the Yale United Nations Scholars' Workstations are two more sites with reliable and comprehensive aims for coverage of specific secondary material on women and on the United Nations, respectively.

Journals to watch for as you update your status information on a wide variety of instruments include International human rights reports , (Nottingham, England : Human Rights Law Centre, University of Nottingham, 1994-) (contains reports, communications, general comments on UN treaties); Human rights law journal : HRLJ ( Kehl am Rhein [West Germany] ; Arlington [Va.] : N.P. Engel, 1980)(updates the status of treaties in January of each year); and the various separate human rights journals published by law schools and universities.

This guide presumes knowledge of, or familiarity with, legal periodical indexes and incorporates references to more specialized indexes in the three guides cited in the first paragraph of this presentation. Lexis, QL, and Westlaw materials are similarly referenced as potential sources using topical and Boolean search approached within those fee-based systems, as appropriate. However, of particular interest for web-based searching may be the following free web sites, particularly for staying abreast of developments in international criminal law: the Scout Report for the Social Sciences, lists and evaluates new sites for substantial research.

JSTOR, indexes and provides full text access to the American Journal of International Law and several other publications.

RAVE, a site at the university at Duesseldorf, Germany, produces a bibliography of Public International Law and European Law articles and links to full text where possible.

The "Virtual Institute" of the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law in Heidelberg , provides a kind of online encyclopaedia of public international law similar to the print counterpart.

Selected International Human Rights Instruments

Selected International Venues for Enforcing Human Rights Law  

 

International Courts

International Law Sites

Key Internet Sources  

 

Amnesty International Online
This is the official Internet site for AI. It contains the most up-to-date information -- new document summaries, publications from AI (including the annual country reports), and links to other sites. 

 

Childlaborlaws.org

This project is compiling information on child labor and related issues. The web site provides access to a child labor legislative database of laws from around the world, essays, and a research forum.

 

Coalition for an International Criminal Court
The Coalition for the International Criminal Court is a network of over 2,000 non-governmental organizations (NGOs) advocating for a fair, effective and independent International Criminal Court (ICC).  It provides access to documents, reports, and current information regarding the ICC.

 

Derechos -- Human Rights

This web site offers a variety of human rights information including reports on human rights violations, actions, links and documents. Information is organized by country and by issue; an index and a search engine allow for easy finding of materials. There is a focus on Latin America and many of these documents are only available in Spanish.

 

Forced Migration Online (FMO).
This web site provides access to online resources dealing with the situation of forced migrants worldwide. These resources include journal articles, full-text documents, and other web resources. 

 

Honour Crimes Project. This project focuses on forced marriage along with other issues related to  ‘honour‘ crimes.   The site provides access to a Bibliography on Crimes of Honour, materials on forced marriage, links, and other resources and materials.

 

Human Rights & Constitutional Rights
Lots of links to sites and documents, arranged by country reports, international links, regional links, national links, and documents. Of particular interest is the
Bill of Rights Comparative Law Materials page which provides access to constitutional law cases from jurisdictions around the world (http://www.hrcr.org/safrica/). 

 

Human Rights Centre, States of Emergency Database
The States of Emergency Database contains legislative texts and other relevant information on states of emergency in Northern Ireland, China, El Slavadore, India, Malaysis, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Turkey and East Timor. 

 

Human Rights Internet
Human Rights Internet is an international network of human rights organizations, documentation centre, and publishing house. This site contains a lot of everything including UN documents, education materials, resource guides and lists of links.

Human Rights Information and Documentation Systems, International, established in 1982, is a global network of human rights organizations concerned with human rights information. It establishes basic tools for handling and managing human rights documents, provides training, and advice on software. It has developed a new search tool called HURISEARCH. This search engine aims to "provide one point access to all human rights information published by human rights organizations worldwide; create a level playing field on which all human rights organisations can have their sites indexed knowing fully the indexing and ranking techniques used and knowing that the search engine operations are overseen by their peers."

 

INCORE Regional Internet Guides
These guides provide information about internet resources on conflict and ethnicity specific to particular countries and regions. 

 

Legislationline.org
This is a free online service that compiles international documents and domestic legislation (for OSCE countries) on a variety of issues: citizenship, fair trial, migration, independent judiciary, trafficking of human beings, and more. 

 

Minority Rights Information System (MIRIS)

The database provides access to domestic legislation, international documents, case law, country information, reports, and treaties for issues related to minority rights. 

 

OneWorld Online "OneWorld is dedicated to promoting human rights and sustainable development by harnessing the democratic potential of the Internet."  It contains news, thematic guides and other resources. 

 

Project DIANA
DIANA is an on-line resource inspired by the life and work of Professor Diana Vincent-Daviss, the late Deputy Director of the Orville H. Schell, Jr. Center for International Human Rights and librarian of Yale Law School. Professor Vincent-Daviss was a comprehensive bibliographer of literature on human rights. This service is named DIANA in her honor. The aim of DIANA is to create an electronic library of human rights materials, from treaties, secondary sources, court decisions, legal briefs, and current information from international nongovernmental human rights organizations. The participating sites include
University of Minnesota Human Rights Library and The Avalon Project at Yale Law School

 

Protection Project
The project documents and disseminates information about the scope of the problem of trafficking in persons, especially women and children, with a focus on national and international laws, case law, and implications of trafficking on U.S. and international foreign policy.

 

University of Minnesota, Human Rights Library Links
A collection of over 1200 human rights and related links. 

 

Web Genocide Documentation Centre, Resources on Genocide, War Crimes and Mass Killings. This site is organized into subject categories, such as appropriations, Cambodia, conventions, statutes, documents, Sierra Leone, war criminals, and many more. Under each subject, a list of sources is given with a brief annotation and a link to the materials. The focus is "on some of the most important twentieth-century genocidal and mass man-made killing occurrences. A major emphasis is on the provision of primary materials relating to such occurrences." There is also a search mechanism. 

 

Women‘s Human Rights Resources

This site continues to be one of the best resources on women‘s human rights. The site has been reorganized and the materials are now available in a new resources database. The materials are organized into articles, documents and links. Other useful materials are available as well, such as fact sheets, publications, and research guides. 

 

WorldLII, Human Rights Links


A good collection of links to many human rights web sites around the world. Links are arranged by category and there is also a search mechanism.

Selected International/National Human Rights Law Organizations

 

This page was last modified on Septermber 02, 2008 by Lawrence J. Gist II and is based on work by LII Editor, Eric Finkelstein, among other noted scholars. Content is available under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 License

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