Regarding Rights

Academic and activist perspectives on human rights


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Indigenous Peoples and FPIC: When does the ‘C’ mean ‘Consent’?

By Jackie Hartley, Faculty of Law, University of New South Wales

Indigenous Rights Now! Photo courtesy of the Rainforest Action Network: www.act.ran.org

The Inter-American Court of Human Rights may soon have an opportunity to confirm whether, and under what circumstances, States are required to obtain the consent of Indigenous peoples in relation to resource development.

Indigenous peoples have long asserted a right to determine whether resource development can occur within their traditional territories. In a range of international fora, advocates for the rights of Indigenous peoples frequently argue that States should obtain the free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) of Indigenous peoples before authorising development projects that affect them. To a significant extent, the emergence of this standard reflects the need for Indigenous peoples to protect the integrity of their lands and their relationships with them. However, the standard also reflects a strong belief that States ought to respect Indigenous peoples’ decision-making authority, governance structures and laws in relation to their territories. Continue Reading →


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Centre for International Governance and Justice: News and Events

Bulto, The Extraterritorial Application of the Right to Water in AfricaCIGJ congratulates our former Laureate Postdoctoral Fellow, Takele Bulto, on the release of his new book, The Extraterritorial Application of the Human Right to Water in Africa. Takele’s book will be launched in Melbourne today by Professor Carolyn Evans, Dean of the University of Melbourne’s Law School.

International human rights law has only recently concerned itself with water. InThe Extraterritorial Application of the Human Right to Water in Africa, Takele challenges the established analytic boundaries of international water law and international human rights law. He shows that human rights law and the international law of watercourses can apply in tandem to protect non-national non-residents in Africa and beyond.

Takele was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre until 2012 and continues to be involved in our activities as a Visiting Fellow. In 2012 he accepted a position at the University of Canberra, where he is currently Assistant Professor of Law. We wish you well for the launch today Takele!


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From Cold War to Human Security: The Final Report of the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

By Christoph Sperfeldt

Centre for International Governance & Justice, ANU

Public Hearings held in Tokyo by the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea © OHCHR

Public Hearings held in Tokyo by the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
© OHCHR

On 17 February 2014, the Commission of Inquiry (COI) on Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) presented its long-awaited final report [1], which was shortly afterwards “categorically” rejected by DPRK representatives as a “sheer fabrication”.

The report is the culmination of more than a decade of advocacy efforts by non-governmental organisations and United Nations human rights bodies to shift the world’s attention from security and nuclear concerns in its relations with North Korea to ongoing serious human rights violations in the DPRK. Continue Reading →