1995/45. Human rights and unilateral coercive measures

The Commission on Human Rights,

Recalling the principles set forth in the Charter of the United Nations,

Recalling also General Assembly resolution 2625 (XXV) of 24 October 1970 containing the Declaration on the Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relations and Cooperation among States in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations,

Reaffirming General Assembly resolution 3281 (XXIX) of 12 December 1974 containing the Charter of Economic Rights and Duties of States, in particular its article 32 which declares that no State may use or encourage the use of economic, political or any other type of measures to coerce another State in order to obtain from it the subordination of the exercise of its sovereign rights,

Reaffirming also the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action (A/CONF.157/23) adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights on 25 June 1993, in particular, part I, paragraph 31 relating to the kind of measures referred to in the present resolution,

Stressing its resolution 1994/47 of 4 March 1994,

Gravely concerned that the use of unilateral coercive measures adversely affects the socio-humanitarian activities of developing countries and that, in some cases, intensification of such measures has taken place recently, hindering the acquisition of essential goods, and has a negative effect on the full enjoyment of all human rights,

Taking note of the report submitted by the Secretary-General pursuant to its resolution 1994/47 (E/CN.4/1995/43),

1. Calls upon the international community to reject the use by some
countries of unilateral coercive measures which are in clear contradiction with international law against developing countries with the purpose of exerting, directly or indirectly, coercion on the sovereign decisions of the countries subject to those measures;

2. Reaffirms that the implementation of such measures or their intensification as a means to exercise political, economic or social pressure against developing countries prevents the full realization of all human rights by the people subject to those measures, particularly children, women and elderly people;

3. Requests all States to refrain from adopting any unilateral coercive measures which are in clear contradiction with international law and the Charter of the United Nations and creates obstacles to trade relations among States and impedes the full realization of the rights set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international human rights instruments, in particular the right of everyone to a standard of living adequate for their health and well-being, including food and medical care, housing and the necessary social services;

4. Rejects the fact that some countries using their predominant position in the world economy continue to intensify the adoption of unilateral coercive measures against developing countries which are in clear contradiction with international law, such as trade restrictions, blockades, embargoes, freezing of assets, with the purpose of preventing those countries from exercising their right fully to determine their political, economic and social system;

5. Reaffirms the right of peoples to self-determination and to dispose of their natural wealth and resources without foreign pressure, and that in no case may a people be deprived of its basic means of subsistence;

6. Also reaffirms that essential goods, in particular food and medicines, should not be used as a tool for political pressure;

7. Stresses that the Working Group on the Right to Development identified the adoption of unilateral coercive measures as one of the obstacles to the implementation of the Declaration on the Right to Development;

8. Considers that the adoption or intensification of unilateral coercive measures constitutes a violation of the human rights of peoples;

9. Requests the Secretary-General to submit, in consultation with Governments and specialized agencies, as well as with intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, a report to the Commission on Human Rights at its fifty-second session on the coercive measures unilaterally implemented against developing countries hindering the full realization of all rights set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international human rights instruments, in particular the right of peoples to a minimum standard of living and development;

10. Decides to consider this issue, as a matter of high priority, at its fifty-second session.
53rd meeting
3 March 1995
[Adopted by a roll-call vote of 24 votes to 17, with
12 abstentions. See chap. XI. E/CN.4/1995/176]


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