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On people's human rights (Part VI)
Chien-Yuan Tseng, Ph.D

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[Part V was published on January 27, 2003.]

6. Conclusion

Ever since the United Nations was founded, large numbers of independent nation-states entered into international laws system. With the efforts made by the third world, many new human rights concepts, different from traditional western conceptions, were brought into international laws system. In any case, a lot of documents of international human rights laws, being United Nations Charter, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Two International Covenants of Human Rights, all related international human rights treaties, resolutions of the United Nations and important international organizations, and international court’s decisions, all have their own effects on theorizing and practice of international human rights laws. All states concerned, whether being member of international organization or contracting party of treaties, must be bound and respond to it in international relationship. Neither People’s Republic of China nor the United States was full member signing the Two International Covenants of Human Rights, the former has long suffered from Western critic on human rights conditions and diplomatic problems, and the latter criticized of its double standard on human rights diplomatic policy. Although Taiwan is not a member of the United Nations, due to needs of international association, also consent to obey and follow all important resolutions passed by the United Nations. These examples proved the trend for internationalization of human rights. No state could avoid the regulation and obligations abide by international community, resorting to international human rights would generate invaluable and great effects on national image and expansion of political economic relationship.

Oppressed by political reasons, Taiwan’s diplomatic support shrank rapidly after Taiwan withdrew from the membership of the United Nations in 1971. Consequently Taiwan was barred from many important international conferences concerning development and benefit of the Taiwanese people and nowhere to express the will and opinion of the people. The internationally recognized lawful interests and benefit of Taiwan were neglected and infringed for a long time. When the international community was restricted by the claims of the People’s Republic of China and limited itself in the traditional international laws of sovereignty, Taiwan needed to be creative on the development of pragmatic international relations, in addition to endlessly trying to attend, participate in international organizations. Thus avoiding direct confrontation with the PRC and reducing possibilities of strong antagonism is useful for Taiwan to return to international community. The economic development in Taiwan used to be called a “Taiwan miracle” in the last few decades, the democratization and liberalization in the last decade won big success too. The experiences of social, economic, and political development in Taiwan are something to be proud of and worth sharing with the rest of the world, these also serve as the most powerful supports for Taiwan to contribute to the international community. This article suggests Taiwanese government turning some of the diplomatic attention to international civil society, fighting for public opinion supports and sympathy. Most of all, the government must not over look the development and trend of international human rights law and the part we could play in it to reinforce dialogue and connection in international people’s rights organizations. In one hand, Taiwan may earn worldwide respect by supporting human rights and people’s rights movement to build up the state as east Sweden; in the other hand, Taiwan may appeal to the international community of the discriminated situation and treatment Taiwan suffered, criticize PRC’s hegemony and violation on Taiwanese people’s rights, and ask the international community jointly to guarantee the realization of Taiwanese people’s rights.

Facing the international political reality, we see the fact that Taiwanese people are not fairly treated and protected by the United Nations laws system. For Taiwanese people to share justice and all that the rest of the world are entitled to enjoy by the name of people’s rights, in existence or coming to existence, would be the author’s wish as this article draws to a close.

* Tseng, Chien-Yuan is Assistant Professor at Graduate Institute of National Development of National Taiwan University, and Part-time Assistant Professor, Department of Public Administration Chung-Hwa University


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I thank to Professor Hsu, Chih-Hsiung for teaching and suggesting in his seminar at National Taiwan University, Graduate Institute of Law in 1998, and Master Wang, Hui-ying for helping me to translate this paper from Chinese to English sufferingly.

First written in 1998, (Rewritten in March 2002)

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