HR Treaty Bodies – UN OHCHR TB

Short after 1945, States sought to set out in a single document the human rights commitments enclosed in the UN Charter and adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) on 10th December 1948. The document sets out a general prohibition of discrimination and then enumerates specific group of rights: civil, cultural, economic, political and social. Even though the Declaration is not legally binding it does represent the first internationally agreed definition of the rights of all people.

It laid the ground work for the treaties that emerged in the following years. Each ofthose treaties provides for the creation of a committee of independent experts that monitor the implementation of the provisions of the treaty it is related to. Indeed, each State party to a treaty has an obligation to respect, implement but also take steps to make sure that everyone in the State party enjoys the rights sets out in the ratified treaty. Currently there are nine human rights treaties and one optional protocol, from which 10 treaty bodies have been established.