The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) - “The European Court of Human Rights is an international court set up in 1959. It rules on individual or state applications alleging violations of the civil and political rights set out in the European Convention on Human Rights. Since 1998 it has sat as a full-time court and individuals can apply to it directly” (Official website of the Council of Europe).The Court is stationed in Strasbourg, in France.
The International Convention on Civil and Political Rights - The International Convention on Civil and Political Rights was adopted by the United Nation assembly on 16 December 1966 and entered into force on 23 March 1976. The Convention obligated states that signed it to respect the civil and political rights of individuals, including the right to life, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, electoral rights and the right of a fair trial. The United Nations Human Rights Committee monitor the compliance of states with the Convention.
The Northern government in the capital Khartoum (Sudan) - Sudan became independent in 1956 after a conflict over power sharing of the colonized country by two states: Great- Britain and Egypt. As part of the English tactic to avoid Egypt from obtaining more influence in Sudan, it granted Sudan’s independence to the Northern Sudanese elites - who identified themselves as Muslim and Arabic. Because these Northern politicians could use the British support as their power base to achieve independence, they did not have to make any approaches to the South to gain their support. As a result the North-Sudanese could culturally suppress and neglect the Southern regions.
The Security Council - The Security Council is the United Nations' most powerful organ. Its primary responsibility is the protection of international peace and security. It is very powerful because it can interfere the right of sovereignty when this seems necessary to protection the peace and security of the international community. The legal basis of this right by the Security Council can be found in Chapter VII of the Chapter of the UN. The Council consists of five permanent member states (US, UK, Russia, China, France) and ten members states that are elected every two years.
The Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) - The SPLA started in 1983 as a conspiracy of Southern commanders within the Sudanese army. They wanted to start a guerilla war against the Northern government. The leader of the coalition was John Garang. The main source of their frustrations against the government was the continuing under development and neglect of the Southern, Eastern, and Western areas, that were defined as periphery by the government. Moreover, the unfulfilled promises of improvement of the former peace agreement between the North and the South added more fuel to the fire. They wanted to create a united coalition of those who opposed the Northern Elites. Although in the beginning the coalition was associated with the Dinka ethnicity –even though not all its leaders were Dinka -, this association disappeared within a year. Support for the SPLA grew quick after its foundation, partly because of the assist they receive from the Ethiopian state. Until 1991 they had much military success. However, because of a regime change in Ethiopia –the new regime aligned with the government instead the coalition -, and an internal split their successes diminished. In 1994 the organization regained its strength. After the peace agreement in 2005, the SPLA was reformed and became part of Sudanese political institutions. On the ground the fighting continued. The SPLA is now the official army of South-Sudan after its independence in 2011.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights - The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by United Nation (UN) assembly on 10 December 1948. It was put together by a commission under the leadership of Eleanor Roosevelt. The Declaration is a direct result of the experience of the Second World War and is the first international acknowledgment of human right put on paper. The articles were not obligations (binding law) for the states that signed it, but it has been very influential for the binding International Human Right treaties that were created in the decades after, as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (1976) and International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights(1976).
Truth and reconciliation commission - A truth and reconciliation commission (TRC) is a commission that is tasked to uncover wrongdoings by past regimes and/or non-state actors. A TRC is a form of restorative justice: instead of retribution (through tribunals or national courts) against the offenders, it is a way to seek repair of social connections, of restoring the society and peace. This is done through truth-seeking, where actors from both sides of the conflict can come and give their testimony to the commission. Perhaps one of the most famous examples of such a commission was the TRC in South Africa, set up in 1995 to uncover the truth on what happened during the Apartheid regime.
- Synonyms: TRC
- Synonyms: TRC
Two-state solution - The two-state solution would establish an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel — two states for two peoples. In theory, this would win Israel security and allow it to retain a Jewish demographic majority (letting the country remain Jewish and democratic) while granting the Palestinians a state. There are 4 issues that have proven most challenging, however:
- There is no consensus about where to draw the borders. generally, it is considered that the border will follow the lines before the Arab-Israeli war of 1967. However, the settlement in the West Bank wille make it difficult to establish that part of the land as part of an independent Palestinian state.
- Both sides claim Jerusalem as their capital.
- Many Palestinians fled or were expelled during the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, their descendants claim they have the right to return to the land that was ‘theirs’. Israel does not want this because it would mean an end to their demographic majority.
- Palestinians want the foreign military occupation to end. Israel wants to avoid a group like Hamas to take over the West Bank. It also wants to be able to defend itself against foreign armies and this necessitates Israeli military presence in parts of the West Bank.