Human rights and terrorism

Commission on Human Rights resolution 1997/42

The Commission on Human Rights,

Guided by the Charter of the UnitedNations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Declaration on Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relations and Cooperation among States in accordance with the Charter of the UnitedNations and the International Covenants on Human Rights,

Recalling the Declaration on the Occasion of the Fiftieth Anniversary of the UnitedNations adopted by the GeneralAssembly in its resolution50/6 of24October1995,

Recalling also the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights inJune1993 (A/CONF.157/23),

Recalling further GeneralAssembly resolutions46/51 of 9December1991, 49/60 of 9December1994, 50/53 of 11December1995, 50/186 of22December1995 and 51/210 of 17December1996, as well as its own resolution1996/47 of 19April1996,

Noting resolution1996/20 of 29August1996 of the Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities, and noting the decision of the Sub-Commission to have a working paper prepared on the question of human rights and terrorism to be considered by the Sub-Commission at its forty-ninth session,

Convinced that terrorism, in all its forms and manifestations, wherever and by whomever committed, can never be justified in any instance, including as a means to promote and protect human rights,

Taking into account that acts of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations aimed at the destruction of human rights have continued despite national and international efforts,

Bearing in mind that the most essential and basic human right is the right to life,

Bearing in mind also that terrorism creates an environment that destroys the freedom from fear of the people,

Reiterating that all States have an obligation to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms, and that everyone should strive to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance,

Seriously concerned at the gross violations of human rights perpetrated by terrorist groups,

Profoundly deploring the increasing number of innocent persons, including women, children and older persons, killed, massacred and maimed by terrorists,

Noting with great concern the growing connection between terrorist groups and increased organized crime, in particular the illegal traffic in arms and drugs,

Reaffirming that all measures to counter terrorism must be in strict conformity with international law including international human rights standards,

Stressing the need further to strengthen international cooperation between States, international organizations and agencies, regional organizations and arrangements and the UnitedNations in order to prevent,combat and eliminate terrorism in all its forms and manifestations,whereverand by whomever committed, and inviting interested non-governmental organizations to join States in condemning terrorism,

Bearing in mind the possibility of considering in the future the elaboration of a comprehensive convention on international terrorism, and stressing that respect for human rights is and must be an essential component of such an effort,

1. Expresses its solidarity with the victims of terrorism;

2. Reiterates the unequivocal condemnation of all acts, methods and practices of terrorism, regardless of their motivation, in all its forms and manifestations, wherever and by whomever committed, as acts of aggression aimed at the destruction of human rights, fundamental freedoms and democracy, threatening the territorial integrity and security of States, destabilizing legitimately constituted Governments, undermining pluralistic civil society and having adverse consequences for the economic and social development ofStates;

3. Condemns incitement of ethnic hatred, violence and terrorism;

4. Calls upon States to take all necessary and effective measures, in strict conformity with international law including international human rights standards, to prevent, combat and eliminate terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, wherever and by whomever committed;

5. Urges the international community to enhance cooperation at the regional and international levels in the fight against terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, in accordance with relevant international instruments, including those relating to human rights, with the aim of its eradication;

6. Urges all thematic special rapporteurs and working groups to address, as appropriate, the consequences of the acts, methods and practices of terrorist groups, in their forthcoming reports to the Commission;

7. Requests the Secretary-General to continue to collect information on the implications of terrorism and of the fight against terrorism on the full enjoyment of human rights from all relevant sources, including Governments, specialized agencies, intergovernmental organizations and non-governmental organizations, and to make it available to the special rapporteurs and working groups concerned and the Commission on Human Rights for their consideration;

8. Decides to continue consideration of the question at its fifty-fourth session as a matter of priority.

57th meeting
11 April 1997

[Adopted by a roll-call vote of 28 votes to none, with 23 abstentions. See chap. IX.]


Copyright 1996-2000
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
Geneva, Switzerland