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COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN AFFAIRS
Compilation of Documents Pertaining
to Human Rights
U.S. Laws on Human Rights
Regional Human Rights Instruments
(Laws of Armed Conflict)
For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office
Washington, D.C. 20402
CLEMENT J. ZABLOCKI, Wisconsin, Chairman DANTE B. FASCELL, Florida
WILLIAM S. BROOMFIELD, Michigan LEE H. HAMILTON, Indiana
LARRY WINN, JR., Kansas GUS YATRON, Pennsylvania
BENJAMIN A. GILMAN, New York STEPHEN J. SOLARZ, New York
ROBERT J. LAGOMARSINO, California DON BONKER, Washington
JOEL PRITCHARD, Washington GERRY E. STUDDS, Massachusetts
JIM LEACH, Iowa ANDY IRELAND, Florida
TOBY ROTH, Wisconsin DAN MICA, Florida
OLYMPIA J. SNOWE, Maine MICHAEL D. BARNES, Maryland
HENRY J. HYDE, Illinois HOWARD WOLPE, Michigan
GERALD B. H. SOLOMON, New York GEO. W. CROCKETT, JR., Michigan
DOUGLAS K. BEREUTER, Nebraska SAM GEJDENSON, Connecticut
MARK D. SILJANDER, Michigan
ED ZSCHAU, California
JOHN J. BRADY, Jr., Chief of Staff
SHIRLEY DAWSON, Staff Assistant
SUBCOMMITTEE ON HUMAN RIGHTS AND INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
GUS YATRON, Pennsylvania, Chairman DON BONKER, Washington
JIM LEACH, Iowa MEL LEVINE, California
ED ZSCHAU, California TED WEISS, New York
GERALD B. H. SOLOMON, New York TOM LANTOS, California PETER H. KOSTMAYER, Pennsylvania
ROBERT MICHAEL FINLEY, Subcommittee Staff Director
CYNTHIA D. SPRUNGER, Minority Staff Consultant
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington, D.C. This compilation of human rights materials assembles the provisions in current U.S. laws relating to human rights, the texts of key international human rights instruments adopted by the United Nations, by regional organizations, and the International Red Cross Conferences. It should provide a useful guide for Members of the House of Representatives, particularly those on the Committee on Foreign Affairs, interested in the role of human rights in U.S. foreign policy, as well as for the public.
CLEMENT J. ZABLOCKI,
LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: As members of the Subcommittee on Human Rights and International Organizations, we believe that Congress has an important legislative and oversight role to play in human rights issues, bilateral and multilateral, in U.S. foreign policy. This compilation of basic human rights laws and international instruments should greatly assist the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Congress in carrying out this role.
Part I consists of the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, as well as excerpts from current U.S. statutes relating to human rights.
Part II contains the basic international human rights instruments prepared by the U.N. Commission on Human Rights and adopted by the United Nations: The Universal Declaration on Human Rights; the International Convenants; and the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The key U.N. Charter articles relating to human rights are also included. While it is not possible to include the texts of all international human rights instruments adopted by the United Nations, its Specialized Agencies, and bodies, part III provides the texts of conventions frequently noted in hearings, briefings, and in related matters for ready reference.
Part IV contains regional human rights instruments adopted by the Council of Europe, the Organization of African Unity, the Organization of American States, and the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe. Although the United States is neither a member of the Council nor the OAU, the human rights instruments adopted by these organizations demonstrate the important work in this area that the respective member governments of each organization have contributed.
Part V contains the texts of conventions on war crimes as well as the international humanitarian laws of armed conflict. These impose important obligations on states which have ratified them and are increasingly referred to today in regard to various armed conflicts taking place in the world.
Part VI contains a description of organizations established within the U.S. Government, the United Nations, and regional international organizations that have responsibility for implementing provisions of the various human rights provisions referred to in the