The Geneva Office of AEHRF has signed this coalition as a collective member (just click on ‘this coalition’). And here the mail link:

Dear friends, op-icescr is an abbreviation for the Optional Protocol for the International Covenant of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. This is the UN official terminology asking for a debate on rights other than just political and personal ones. 

People generally think that only the political and personal rights can be claimed by law, at least in countries that have signed the Chart of Human Rights.

Many observers think that economic, social and cultural rights should also be in the category of rights admissible by law. Among the countries strongly supporting this view to be admitted by the UN General Assembly are Brazil and Mexico.

In January 2005, I, as part of NGO delegation, attended an open end debate with Government representatives at the UN in Geneva. Part of views expressed in the debate were surprising. For example, a representative of a Muslim country made a bold assertion in the house that no Muslim country would ever sign this op-icescr, which gives all of these rights to the women. The US representativ was quick to remark that we are only crazy people hoping that all would agree to sign this protocol.

However, the French representative was more sophisticated. He remarked that “all Jean Zieglers (a tough HR fighter) are only waiting to overwhelm our law courts with claims, if ever this Covenant is signed, and as no country is respecting these rights, we will have only a mess”.

An International NGO Network is fighting for the passage of this op-icescr by all member counties of the UN . Thus even if the admission of this Covenant really makes no impact, we still need to use the concept, to understand these rights and to make peoples aware of its content and effect on our daily life.

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