Extraterritoriality: universal human rights without universalobligations? Sigrun I Skogly


Sigrun I. Skogly is a prominent legal scholar specializing in human rights and international law. While I don’t have access to the specific content of Skogly’s work beyond my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, I can provide a general perspective on the topic of extraterritoriality and universal human rights.

Extraterritoriality refers to the application of a country’s laws or jurisdiction beyond its own borders. When it comes to human rights, extraterritoriality raises important questions about the extent to which states should be responsible for protecting and promoting human rights beyond their own territories.

The concept of universal human rights entails that every individual is entitled to certain rights and freedoms, regardless of their nationality, location, or any other factor. However, enforcing and ensuring these rights globally can be challenging, especially in areas where the jurisdiction of one state overlaps with the territory of another or when non-state actors are involved.

One key aspect of extraterritoriality in relation to human rights is the question of obligations. While human rights are considered universal and apply to all individuals, the obligation to protect and fulfill these rights may vary depending on the jurisdiction and legal framework of each state. Some argue that states should have a moral and legal duty to uphold human rights not only within their own territories but also in their actions and policies that have an extraterritorial impact.

However, the implementation of extraterritorial human rights obligations can be complex. It requires international cooperation, consensus on legal frameworks, and mechanisms to hold states accountable for human rights violations that occur beyond their borders. There may be challenges in defining the scope of extraterritorial obligations and determining which state or entity should bear responsibility for protecting and promoting human rights in specific situations.

The subject of extraterritoriality and universal human rights is a complex and evolving area of international law. Scholars like Sigrun I. Skogly likely explore these issues in depth, examining the legal, moral, and practical aspects of ensuring human rights across borders. It would be helpful to refer to Skogly’s specific writings or publications for a comprehensive understanding of her perspectives on this topic.

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