The ICJ today welcomed steps taken by the Palestinian authorities to accede to core international human rights and humanitarian law conventions.
On 1 April 2014, the Palestinian authorities signed 15 letters declaring Palestine’s intention to accede to most of the core international human rights treaties, including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
On 2 April the United Nations confirmed that it had received the accession letters.
The Palestinian authorities also sent letters of accession relating to other international humanitarian law treaties, including the four Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and the Hague Convention (IV) on the laws and customs of war.
These actions of the Palestinian authorities were made feasible following the adoption by the UN General Assembly of resolution 67/19 on 29 November 2012, which accorded to Palestine the status of non-member observer State in the United Nations.
By acceding to these treaties, the Palestinian authorities will assume legal obligations to respect, protect and fulfil a wide range of human rights guaranteed under international treaties.
They will also be obliged to adopt and implement domestic laws and practical measures to give effect to those obligations.
“Commitments by Palestine to abide by these treaties are a step forward towards ensuring that Palestinians, like people throughout most of the rest of world, enjoy the effective legal protection of international human rights and humanitarian law,” said Said Benarbia, Director of the ICJ Middle East and North Africa Programme. “The international community should support these efforts and concrete action taken by the Palestinian authorities to implement the treaties so as to ensure greater protection of the rights of persons under Palestinian jurisdiction.”
Said Benarbia, ICJ Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme, tel: 41 22 979 38 1, e-mail: said.benarbia(a)icj.orgNewsWeb stories