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2 - Marriage of Futility

International Law and Human Rights

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 December 2021

Abdullahi Ahmed An-Naim
Affiliation:
Emory University, Atlanta
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Summary

Legal enforcement of international obligations under domestic law is a contradiction in terms because the same state that has the conclusive obligation to protect human rights also has exclusive control of the means of legal enforcement under domestic law. The impulse for the state to obstruct or hinder the domestic enforcement of its international obligations under routine trade and international relations is effectively precluded by fear of retaliation by other states and/or international organizations that have the power and resources to secure their economic, trade, security, and other interests under international law. Unfortunately, human rights treaties are unlikely to have similar benefits for states when they implement or enforce the treaty or international custom on which a human rights claim is based.1

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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