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Civil And Political Rights

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Chapter Summary

This chapter addresses whether, and if yes, to what degree, civil and political rights are actionable under Alien Tort Statute (ATS). The right to life has been labelled the supreme human right since the taking of one's life disables the person from exercising all other rights. The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) states in article 7 that "[n]o one shall be subjected to torture". In many respects, the definition in the Torture Victim Protection Act (TVPA) resembles the definition given in the Convention against Torture, the treaty exclusively devoted to these two human rights, i.e., the right not to be subjected to torture and the right not to be subjected to cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, which was not yet existing at the time of the Filartiga decision. In Sosa, arbitrary detention was the underlying claim in the civil proceedings.

Keywords: ICCPR; supreme human right; Torture Victim Protection Act (TVPA)



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