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The 1992 Un Declaration on Minorities

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Chapter Summary

At its 47th session, on 18 December 1992, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a Declaration on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities. Although special arrangements concerning some minorities were concluded after World War II, the prevailing view in the United Nations in the early years after its establishment was that general human rights legislation and the principle of non-discrimination were adequate means for the protection of all persons, including members of minorities. The adherence of the Declaration to the system followed by the Covenant on Civil and Political Rights is discussed. Every attempt to evaluate the possible influence of the United Nations Declaration requires a comparison with other recent instruments. In drafting adequate instruments, the distinction must be kept in mind between situations involving a claim of self-determination and aspirations of political independence and cases of scattered minorities or groups.

Keywords: human rights; national minorities; United Nations Declaration



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