The U.N. Covenants on Human Rights are Binding on States / Cuban Law
Association, Argelio M. Guerra
Argelio M. Guerra, Cuban Law Association
The development in 1966 of the International Covenants on Civil and
Political Rights and on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, also known
as the New York Pacts, has a close relationship with the gestation of
the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948. While the latter it
not binding on States, the adoption of the Covenants came to bridge this
shortcoming of the Declaration and, from the perspective of
international law, establish legally binding obligations for States that
become a part — through signing them — of such instruments.
And those conventions on Human Rights have a special feature given by
the very nature of their object of protection, and that is that between
the Parties there is a very different connection than what might be the
result from a treaty in which the reciprocity of the compliance its
obligations is what sets it apart.
Human rights treaties do not establish reciprocal obligations for the
signatory states, but rather oblige them to achieve goals beyond their
own material interests, and if they fail to comply with these
obligations the offending State is called to respond to international
organizations and the community of states.
September 5 2012