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The Right to a Fair Trial under Article 14 of the ICCPR: Travaux Préparatoires

Edited by Amal Clooney, Philippa Webb


This is the companion book to The Right to a Fair Trial in International Law. As we observe in that book, understanding the right to a fair trial may require reference not only to its interpretation by courts, treaty bodies, special rapporteurs, experts, and scholars, but also to the preparatory work of the treaty (travaux préparatoires) and the circumstances of its conclusion. The travaux are a supplementary means of interpretation, used to confirm the meaning resulting from the application of principles of treaty interpretation or to determine the meaning when the interpretation ‘leaves the meaning ambiguous or obscure; or leads to a result which is manifestly absurd or unreasonable’. For this reason, each chapter of The Right to a Fair Trial in International Law contains detailed analysis of the relevant treaty provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), including the travaux. More than 50 years have passed since the ICCPR was opened for signature. The right to a fair trial remains one of the most fundamental rights, and its promotion and protection is as vital as ever. For more than a half-century, the ICCPR has been interpreted by international and regional human rights bodies as well as national courts, legislators, practitioners and academics. Its terms and basic tenets are reflected in national constitutions and laws and the statutes of international criminal courts. Different views on what is conveyed by the treaty’s language are inevitable. It is hoped that this publication will assist with understanding what the drafters intended.

Bibliographic Information

Amal Clooney, editor

Philippa Webb, editor

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