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Italian Yearbook of Human Rights 2014


Edited By Marco Mascia

The Italian Yearbook of Human Rights 2014, the fourth in the series, provides a dynamic and up-to-date overview of the measures Italy has taken to adapt its legislation and policies to international human rights law and to comply with commitments voluntarily assumed by the Italian Government at the international level.
The 2014 Yearbook surveys the activities of the relevant national and local Italian actors, including governmental bodies, civil society organisations and universities. It also presents reports and recommendations that have been addressed to Italy by international monitoring bodies within the framework of the United Nations, the Council of Europe and the European Union. Finally, the Yearbook provides a selection of international and national case-law that casts light on Italy’s position vis-à-vis internationally recognised human rights.
«Italy and human rights in 2013: the challenges of social justice and the right to peace» is the focus of the introductory section of the Yearbook. With a view on the second Universal Periodic Review of Italy before the Human Rights Council, the Italian Agenda of Human Rights 2014, intended to be an orientation tool with regards to immediate and longterm measures that should be taken to ensure human rights for all in the Country, is integrated by an analysis of the status of implementation of the recommendations made to Italy during the first Universal Periodic Review (2010).
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The United Nations System

← 158 | 159 → The United Nations System


The General Assembly, which is the main deliberative body of the United Nations, comprises six Committees, each of which is made up of all 193 United Nations Member States. Human rights issues are handled mainly within the Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee). The responsibilities of this Committee include issues such as torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment; the advancement of women; the rights of refugees and displaced persons; the promotion and protection of the rights of children; the rights of indigenous peoples; the elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance; the right of peoples to self-determination; and social development.

On 2 April 2013 the General Assembly adopted the Arms Trade Treaty, with 154 votes in favour, 3 against and 23 abstentions. The treaty aims to establish common rules regulating the international arms trade as well as thwarting and repressing the illegal trade of so-called conventional weapons, i.e. battle tanks, combat aircraft, combat vehicles, artillery, helicopters, warships, missiles, and long-range rockets, but also small arms and light weapons such as guns, pistols and ammunition.

Moreover, in December 2013, the 68th General Assembly adopted 68 human rights resolutions which had been debated and approved by the Third Committee during the months of October and November. The following ones are specifically highlighted:

– Protecting women human rights defenders (A/RES/68/181). This is the first ever United Nations resolution recognising the role of women human rights defenders. The resolution specifically establishes that...

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