Abstract: Article II-112 (5) of the Treaty Establishing a Constitution for Europe strengthens the rights and principles distinction included in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. Article II-112 (5) differentiates directly justiciable rights from principles that need additional action in order to become “judicially cognisable”. Some commentators claim that principles are meant to refer mainly to social rights. This article discusses two problematic presumptions behind this understanding of the distinction: the understanding of the legal nature of social rights and the concept of justiciability. In addition, few possible consequences of the distinction are discussed.
Keywords: justiciability, social rights, indivisibility, and EU Charter of Fundamental Rights
Abstract: This article describes how the existence of a multi-layered problem of translation affects indigenous peoples’opportunities to secure rights to land through the legal system. In the author’s perspective the context of a court room implies a meeting between a legal world-view and a Sámi perspective, and in interaction with anthropological representatives, as expert witnesses. In this article, efforts are made to increase levels of understanding; the purpose of customary law is explored in the history of the two academic disciplines. Next, an anthropological view of why Sámi are discriminated by the courts are brought out and compared to Sámi perspectives of their own position. Finally, with the aim of creating a dialogue between the two disciplines, the article brings to attention an anthropological debate regarding how anthropologists should characterize customary law, in a manner suitable to the legal system.
Keywords: Customary Law, Indigenous Land Rights, Consultancy research, courtrooms as cultural meetings.
Abstract: In an exploration of current understandings of globalisation as a form of explanans for modernity, the article sets out to test the legitimacy of neo-liberal conceptions of the modern ideal ‘equal opportunity for all’by confronting it with specific paragraphs of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The author argues that the neo-liberal claim of a successful universalising of equal opportunity is illegitimate due to its failure to comply with the most basic rights listed in the Universal Declaration.
Keywords: Modernity, globalisation, Universal Declaration, consumerism, global unfreedom, citizenship.
Abstract: This article discusses the promotion of development under the African Union, which arguably offers a new opportunity for the development of Africa. A link is made between development and human rights with particular reference to socio-economic rights. The relevance of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the Declaration on the Right to Development in the promotion of development in Africa is considered in connection with the argument that development is more than just a social phenomenon. Links are also made between development, economic integration, good governance and democracy. The article also discusses the New Partnership for Africa’s Development, which is seen as a viable process for promoting development under the African Union.
Keywords: African Union, New Partnership for Africa’s Development, economic integration, development, human rights, democracy, good governance, socio-economic rights
Abstract: The rise of victims (human) rights have sharpened a distinction between (suspected) offenders and (claimed) victims, not only in the crime policy discourse but increasingly also in the human rights discourse. The distinction is used when promoting new state control measures in the war against crime and terror, and the argument is that the new measures will protect the victims and harm only the offenders. The fact that most of the new control measures are directed at people who are only suspected, not yet convicted for a crime or terror act, makes it all the more important to resist the tendency to divide human beings into two categories; those that deserve the right to have rights (the “victims”), and those that don’t deserve the right to have rights (the “offenders”).
Keywords: Human rights, victims, offenders, policy