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Changing Modalities: Implementing Human Rights Obligations in Ireland after the Good Friday Agreement

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image of Nordic Journal of International Law

The Good Friday Agreement is transforming the model for implementing human rights in Ireland, aligning the protection of civil rights and liberties in the State more closely with the broader human rights movement in Europe and throughout the rest of the world. This article examines the orchestrated model for protecting human rights which emerges from four of the main human rights commitments undertaken by the Irish government in the Good Friday Agreement. These are: the definition of self-determination and abandonment of the Irish constitutional claim to the six counties of Northern Ireland, the guarantee of the `parity of rights' between the North and South of Ireland, the incorporation of the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms into Irish law, and the creation of a national Human Rights Commission. This orchestrated framework for human rights protection in Ireland offers a unique model for implementing international human rights obligations in an advanced democracy.

Affiliations: 1: Lecturer in Law, Trinity College, Dublin


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