Zawiadomienia indywidualne przed Komitetem Praw Człowieka

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Wydział Prawa i Administracji UAM

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The individual communications before the Human Rights Committee


Last year Hungary, as the only one of the socialist states, ratified the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. It means that Hungary recognizes the competence of the Committee to receive and consider communications from individuals subject to its jurisdiction who claim to be victims of a violation by the state of any of the rights set forth in the Covenant The postulates to ratify the Protocol have also been raised in Poland, so far in the doctrine rather than in political circles. Two types of fears are in the way. Firstly, international supervision is still strongly believed to constitute the intervention in the domestic jurisdiction, to be the violation of sovereignity, and to be against Art. 2 § 7 of the United Nations Charter. Secondly, it proves extremely difficult to overcome a traditional perception of relations between a state and an individual and to recognize those two subjects as equal parties in a dispute heard by the international authority. States are also afraid of individual communication abuse for political purposes. Are those fears justified? A partial answer may be given by the analysis of the international norms regulating the competence of the Human Rights Committee and the supervision procedure. The author analyses the provisions of the Optional Protocol and the Provisional Rules of Procedure adopted by the Committee. She discusses in detail the rules of submission of communications and the their admissibility. Special attention is paid to the views formulated by the committee as well as to their binding force and to the role they play of may play in international practice. Although the Committee's views are of persuasive value only, numerous examples may be given to indicate their significance. The Committee interprets the dispositions of the Covenant. Thus, the views of the Committee may contribute not only to the unification of interpretation of the Covenant by the states, but also to the adoption by the states of some common standards of implementation. In many cases the Committee indicated the measures of enforcement to be adopted by the state. The views of such a kind may not only contribute to securing a friendly settlement of the matter on the basis of respect of human rights as defined in the Covenant but may also encourage the state to adopt the administrative and legislative measures indicated by the Committee. In a few cases the Committee found gross violation of fundamental human rights, i.e it formulated the views which clearly characterized certain facts as violations of international norms considered as "ius cogens". The Committee many times published its view "in extenso"; such publicity has the character of a „sui generis" sanction. However, the purpose of supervision procedure is not the accusation of a state on the international scene. The role of international instruments analysed in the article is not only to protect human rights but also to protect the interests of the state against which the individual raises his/her claism. It is this latter circumstance that should encourage other socialist states to ratify the Optional Protocol.



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Ruch Prawniczy, Ekonomiczny i Socjologiczny 51, 1989, z. 3, s. 35-51



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Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Biblioteka Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Ministerstwo Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wyższego