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The Preamble

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Chapter Summary

The drafting history of the preamble of the 1956 Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, the Slave Trade, and Institutions and Practices Similar to Slavery is taken up in large part with amending the text as put forward by the United Kingdom in 1954 and adding elements, of which the most important during the work of the 1956 Draft Committee was a British proposal that it be noted in the preamble that the 1926 Slavery Convention “remains fully operative” and the 1956 Convention was meant to augment it. Many other delegations thought it right that a “philosophical note” be introduced into the text and that “as a general principle, preambles to conventions should be couched in inspiring language”. Despite the objection by the Belgian representative, a provision in the preamble was included which reads “Considering that freedom is the birthright of every human being”.

Keywords: 1926 Slavery Convention; 1956 Supplementary Convention; servitude; slavery



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