The application of international human rights law in situations of interference by non-State actors
What is it about?
International human rights law does not typically apply directly to actors other than States. This article analysed the ways in which five United Nations human rights bodies deal with situations where an individual's human rights have been affected because of a non-State actor. The practice of the bodies show that two main methods are used, but that ultimately there are shortcomings in the protection of human rights and in the reasoning of the bodies.
Why is it important?
The article provides an up-to-date and in-depth analysis of the practice of the five UN human rights bodies and provides a thorough overview of the ways in which the bodies (and human rights law) treat non-State actors. The most significant finding is the identification of two methods for dealing with non-State actors under international human rights law: (1) holding the State responsible for the conduct of non-State actors; and (2) re-categorising non-State actors as public actors for the purposes of human rights.
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