Palestine adopts significant human rights treatiesListen /
From today, the State of Palestine is bound by international human rights standards, having brought into force five treaties, with two others coming into effect in July.
The treaties include the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
The Optional Protocol to this last convention will come into force in May.
Rupert Colville, spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, says that this is a significant step towards enhancing the promotion and protection of human rights in Palestine.
"Palestine is now bound, as of today, for five treaties and, by July 2nd, seven treaties covering many major issues. And they will therefore, like other states, now be very closely scrutinised in whether they implement those treaties. Those treaties are hard law and therefore it gives a lot of extra ammunition to civil society organizations, the media, the UN and many others to help Palestine ensure that the human rights of Palestinians in the occupied territories, in the West Bank, in Gaza, are upheld." (34″)
In a region where countries have a high number of reservations to human rights treaties, Palestine's accession to the treaties and protocol is unusual in that it came without a single reservation.
Nicki Chadwick, UN Radio, Geneva.