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The Right to Water: Effective Multi-Level Protection of a Multi-Faceted Human Right? – An Application of the Kadi and Medellin Approaches to the Case of the Right to Water

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Chapter Summary

The international human right to water has gained remarkable momentum in the last three years. To ensure universal application while simultaneously respecting the variety of domestic approaches is the challenge a multi-faceted right like the right to water must meet. This chapter discusses recent approaches to conflicting legal orders, namely the Kadi decision by the two European Courts and the Medellin decision by the US Supreme Court, and asks what their application would mean for the right to water. The international human right to water is, like any human right, best understood as setting out a required minimum standard to be adhered to by any State and under any circumstances. States are, however, not hindered, but rather encouraged, to commit themselves to higher domestic levels of protection. It remains their choice whether they do so on the level of their constitution or through their ordinary laws.

Keywords: domestic levels of protection; European Courts; Kadi; Medellin; right to water; US Supreme Court



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