Riccardo Pisillo Mazzeschi

Benedetto Conforti and His Scientific Work on International Human Rights

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Human Rights; General Principles of Law; Jus Cogens; Universal Community; International Personality; Domestic Incorporation of International Human Rights.

The modern positivism and some original ideas of Benedetto Conforti have made an impact on his approach to the field of international human rights. This impact may be seen from the point of view of the sources of international law, of the conception of the international community and of the relationship between international and domestic law. With regard to the sources, the most important contribution of Conforti consists in his novel theory on the general principles of law recognised by civilised nations: their content includes those domestic principles which protect basic and fundamental human rights. With regard to the international community, in 1991 Conforti wrote that, beside and below the traditional international community of States, a universal human community exists, which exerts pressure on the community of States, in order to pursue the interests of individuals and of the whole humanity. Later, in 2002, Conforti goes even further and recognizes the international personality of the individual. Finally, with regard to the relationship between international and national law, Conforti has written several works, in which he demonstrates that some traditional obstacles to the domestic implementation of human rights treaties are legally unfounded: a) the 'Political Question' doctrine; b) the tendency of many domestic courts to consider human rights treaties as having non self-executing character; c) the way some domestic legal systems employ for resolving the conflict between human rights treaties and domestic legislation.

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