International human rights adjudicators, while facing urgent cases, have used provisional measures in order to prevent irreparable harm, e.g. to order States to halt an expulsion, the execution of a death sentence, destruction of the natural habitat, or to ensure access to health care in detention or protection against death threats.
In the practice of the various adjudicators the traditional concept of provisional measures has undergone a process of humanisation. This book addresses the question how such provisional measures can be made as persuasive as possible. Apart from the Inter-American Court, none of the human rights adjudicators motivate or publish their provisional measures. Yet this book analyses their (best) practices and obstacles, determines the underlying rationale for their use of provisional measures and establishes the core of the concept of provisional measures that all adjudicators have in common. It argues that clarity on what belongs to the core of the concept, and on what does not belong to the concept at all, enhances the persuasive force of provisional measures.
The practices of the international adjudicators made accessible in this book may prove useful in the ongoing cross-fertilization occurring among these adjudicators. Moreover, the analysis provided allows individual victims, their counsel, NGOs as well as international institutions to address more effectively urgent human rights cases.
About this book:
‘Rieter’s book is a very worthwhile and sorely needed reference. Overall, the book provides a comprehensive and organized explanation of provisional measures and the bodies that may issue them. Its most important contribution is found in the middle chapters addressing the various situations and kinds of harm previously addressed by human rights tribunals when granting provisional measures, although the practical suggestions to human rights tribunals are also surely welcome. Researchers, human rights defenders and the tribunals themselves will find much in Rieter’s volume to strengthen and enrich their work. Ideally, the information it contains will contribute not only to better understanding of provisional measures, but also to coherence in, and progressive development of, this area of the law.’
X on internationalhumanrightslaw.org (2010))
GENERAL CONCLUSION (p. 1079)
The Human Rights Research Series’ central research theme is the nature and meaning of international standards in the field of human rights, their application and promotion in the national legal order, their interplay with national standards, and the international supervision of such application. Anyone directly involved in the definition, study, implementation, monitoring, or enforcement of human rights will find this series an indispensable reference tool.
The Series is published together with the world famous Netherlands Network for Human Rights Research (formerly School of Human Rights Research), a joint effort by human rights researchers in the Netherlands.
Editorial Board: Prof. dr. Antoine Buyse (Utrecht University), Prof. dr. Fons Coomans (Maastricht University), Prof. dr. Yvonne Donders (Chair - University of Amsterdam), Dr. Antenor Hallo de Wolf (University of Groningen), Prof. dr. Kristin Henrard (Erasmus University Rotterdam), Prof. dr. Nicola Jägers (Tilburg University), Prof. Titia Loenen (Leiden University) Prof. dr. Janne Nijman (T.M.C. Asser Instituut) and Prof. dr. Brigit Toebes (University of Groningen).
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