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Forwarded extracts from the UN Human Rights Commission - the second extract explicitly says that humanitarian exemptions, in the context of sanctions, do NOT have the desired effect. It is also written that states imposing sanctions have the OBLIGATION to respond to suffering caused by their sanctions. -----Original Message----- From: firstname.lastname@example.org [SMTP:email@example.com] Sent: 02 February 1999 15:08 To: ADC-ITF@leb.net Subject: [ADC-ITF] UN Human Rights EcoSoc - sanctions vs Iraq The following extracts are from:Committee on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (United Nations Human Rights Commission), ''Note on the seventeenth session'' 17 November to 5 December 1997. http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu2/6//cescrnote.htm (...) The main issues of concern of the Committee were the deterioration of the economic, social and cultural rights in Iraq; reports of discrimination against members of minorities, including the Kurds and the Marsh people, and against women; the prohibition of independent trade unions; the increasing use of child labour; the situation of squatters and the problem of forced evictions; the non-availability of food, medicines and safe drinking water in many rural areas; and the increasing illiteracy rate and the right to primary education in general terms. (...) Furthermore, the Committee adopted a General Comment No. 8 (1997) on the relationship between economic sanctions and respect for economic, social and cultural rights. This General Comment received extensive press coverage and great deal of interest from States parties to the Covenant. It focuses on the DRAMATIC IMPACT SANCTIONS ALWAYS HAVE ON THE RIGHTS recognized in the Covenant and underlines that, DESPITE THE INCLUSION OF HUMANITARIAN EXEMPTIONS in the sanction regimes established by the Security Council in order to ensure basic respect for economic, social and cultural rights, A NUMBER OF RECENT UNITED NATIONS REPORTS AND STUDIES SHOW THAT THESE EXEMPTIONS DO NOT HAVE THE EXPECTED EFFECT (emphasis added). It concludes by suggesting that three steps be taken, which follow from the recognition of economic, social and cultural rights: 1) these rights must be fully taken into account when a sanction regime is being designed; 2) effective monitoring should be undertaken throughout the period that sanctions are in force, and 3) the party or parties responsible for the imposition, maintenance or implementation of the sanctions have the OBLIGATION "to take steps, individually and through international assistance and co-operation, especially economic and technical", in accordance with article 2, paragraph 1, of the Covenant, in order TO RESPOND to ANY disproportionate suffering experienced by vulnerable groups within the targeted country (emphasis added). -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To be removed/added, email firstname.lastname@example.org, NOT the whole list. Archived at http://linux.clare.cam.ac.uk/~saw27/casi/discuss.html