The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and subsequent instruments of international human rights law and international humanitarian law play a vital role in providing protection for refugees and internally displaced peoples. Yet the claim to universality has been disputed and not all states have acceded to these legal instruments. It seems that a particular point of controversy or dispute in the Islamic world is their compatibility with shari'a.
To mark the 60th anniversary of the UDHR, the Editors of Forced Migration Review (FMR) produced a short supplement in 2008 to enhance debate and understanding of the concepts and instruments of international human rights in the Islamic world. The original supplement was generously funded by UNICEF Iran. We are now publishing this revised and updated edition, alongside an issue of FMR on North Africa where the uprisings of 2011 have led to opportunities to enhance the rule of law and improve the implementation of rights.
This supplement includes the full text of the UDHR, the 1990 Cairo Declaration and the May 2012 Ashgabat Declaration in the hope that they will both inform and enable those concerned with assisting and protecting displaced people to advocate more strongly on their behalf. …