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The Right to Life

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Chapter Summary

This chapter deals with the right to life in so far as it concerns the use of force by police although, clearly, other issues such as abortion and voluntary euthanasia also arise in connection with this right. The jurisprudence of the various treaty bodies includes a great number of cases on the right to life, and much of this has its origins in situations where police and other state officials used force. A few representative cases are considered in order to expand upon what has already been said about the right, and to illustrate various aspects of the exercise, and also the abuse, of the power to use force. A number of non-treaty instruments addressed to police set out standards on the use of force. Compliance with these reinforces protection of the right to life and enhances the professionalism and effectiveness of police.

Keywords: American Convention; Human Rights Committee; Life; non-treaty instruments; police officials; right to life; treaty body jurisprudence; treaty provisions



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