Reconstructing sovereignty: a human rights perspective

Mills, K. (1997) Reconstructing sovereignty: a human rights perspective. Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights, 15, pp. 267-290.

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Abstract

The balance between traditional conceptions ofsovereignty and human rights is changing. This article argues that developments in the area of human rights and humanitarian assistance are forcing a reconceptualisation of the rights and duties inherent in claims to sovereign authority. Further, from a normative political theory perspective, this article maintains that by investigating the social purpose of the State, we can identify three essential building blocks of sovereignty - human rights, popular sovereignty, and self-determination. In addition, this same analysis leads to the conclusion that the international community has not only a right but a duty to ensure that human rights are protected. In other words, a reconceptualisation of the relationship between individuals, groups, the State, and the international community is put forth which is more ambiguous than traditional formulations.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Mills, Dr Kurt
Authors: Mills, K.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Politics
Journal Name:Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights
Publisher:Netherlands Institute of Human Rights
ISSN:0924-0519

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