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International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights

 

                        Adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by

                         General Assembly resolution 2200A (XXI) of 16 December 1966

 

                         entry into force 23 March 1976, in accordance with Article 49

 

status of ratifications

declarations and reservations

 

Preamble

 

     The States Parties to the present Covenant,

 

     Considering that, in accordance with the principles proclaimed in the Charter of the United Nations, recognition of the

     inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom,

     justice and peace in the world,

 

     Recognizing that these rights derive from the inherent dignity of the human person,

 

     Recognizing that, in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the ideal of free human beings enjoying

     civil and political freedom and freedom from fear and want can only be achieved if conditions are created whereby

     everyone may enjoy his civil and political rights, as well as his economic, social and cultural rights,

 

     Considering the obligation of States under the Charter of the United Nations to promote universal respect for, and

     observance of, human rights and freedoms,

 

     Realizing that the individual, having duties to other individuals and to the community to which he belongs, is under a

     responsibility to strive for the promotion and observance of the rights recognized in the present Covenant,

 

     Agree upon the following articles:

 

                                              PART I

 

Article 1 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. All peoples have the right of self-determination. By virtue of that right they freely determine their political status and

     freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development.

 

     2. All peoples may, for their own ends, freely dispose of their natural wealth and resources without prejudice to any

     obligations arising out of international economic co-operation, based upon the principle of mutual benefit, and international

     law. In no case may a people be deprived of its own means of subsistence.

 

     3. The States Parties to the present Covenant, including those having responsibility for the administration of

     Non-Self-Governing and Trust Territories, shall promote the realization of the right of self-determination, and shall respect

     that right, in conformity with the provisions of the Charter of the United Nations.

 

                                              PART II

 

Article 2 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. Each State Party to the present Covenant undertakes to respect and to ensure to all individuals within its territory and

     subject to its jurisdiction the rights recognized in the present Covenant, without distinction of any kind, such as race,

     color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.

 

     2. Where not already provided for by existing legislative or other measures, each State Party to the present Covenant

     undertakes to take the necessary steps, in accordance with its constitutional processes and with the provisions of the

     present Covenant, to adopt such laws or other measures as may be necessary to give effect to the rights recognized in

     the present Covenant.

 

     3. Each State Party to the present Covenant undertakes:

 

          (a) To ensure that any person whose rights or freedoms as herein recognized are violated shall have an

          effective remedy, notwithstanding that the violation has been committed by persons acting in an official

          capacity;

 

          (b) To ensure that any person claiming such a remedy shall have his right thereto determined by competent

          judicial, administrative or legislative authorities, or by any other competent authority provided for by the legal

          system of the State, and to develop the possibilities of judicial remedy;

 

          (c) To ensure that the competent authorities shall enforce such remedies when granted.

 

Article 3 General comment on its implementation

 

     The States Parties to the present Covenant undertake to ensure the equal right of men and women to the enjoyment of all

     civil and political rights set forth in the present Covenant. General comment on its implementation

 

Article 4 General comment on its implementation

 

     1 . In time of public emergency which threatens the life of the nation and the existence of which is officially proclaimed,

     the States Parties to the present Covenant may take measures derogating from their obligations under the present

     Covenant to the extent strictly required by the exigencies of the situation, provided that such measures are not

     inconsistent with their other obligations under international law and do not involve discrimination solely on the ground of

     race, color, sex, language, religion or social origin.

 

     2. No derogation from articles 6, 7, 8 (paragraphs I and 2), 11, 15, 16 and 18 may be made under this provision.

 

     3. Any State Party to the present Covenant availing itself of the right of derogation shall immediately inform the other

     States Parties to the present Covenant, through the intermediary of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, of the

     provisions from which it has derogated and of the reasons by which it was actuated. A further communication shall be

     made, through the same intermediary, on the date on which it terminates such derogation.  General comment on its

     implementation

 

Article 5

 

     1. Nothing in the present Covenant may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in

     any activity or perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms recognized herein or at their

     limitation to a greater extent than is provided for in the present Covenant.

 

     2. There shall be no restriction upon or derogation from any of the fundamental human rights recognized or existing in any

     State Party to the present Covenant pursuant to law, conventions, regulations or custom on the pretext that the present

     Covenant does not recognize such rights or that it recognizes them to a lesser extent.

 

                                              PART III

 

Article 6 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. Every human being has the inherent right to life. This right shall be protected by law. No one shall be arbitrarily

     deprived of his life.

 

     2. In countries which have not abolished the death penalty, sentence of death may be imposed only for the most serious

     crimes in accordance with the law in force at the time of the commission of the crime and not contrary to the provisions of

     the present Covenant and to the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. This penalty

     can only be carried out pursuant to a final judgment rendered by a competent court.

 

     3. When deprivation of life constitutes the crime of genocide, it is understood that nothing in this article shall authorize

     any State Party to the present Covenant to derogate in any way from any obligation assumed under the provisions of the

     Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

 

     4. Anyone sentenced to death shall have the right to seek pardon or commutation of the sentence. Amnesty, pardon or

     commutation of the sentence of death may be granted in all cases.

 

     5. Sentence of death shall not be imposed for crimes committed by persons below eighteen years of age and shall not be

     carried out on pregnant women.

 

     6. Nothing in this article shall be invoked to delay or to prevent the abolition of capital punishment by any State Party to

     the present Covenant.

 

Article 7 General comment on its implementation

 

     No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. In particular, no one shall

     be subjected without his free consent to medical or scientific experimentation.

 

Article 8

 

     1. No one shall be held in slavery; slavery and the slave-trade in all their forms shall be prohibited.

 

     2. No one shall be held in servitude.

 

     3.

 

          (a) No one shall be required to perform forced or compulsory labor;

 

          (b) Paragraph 3 (a) shall not be held to preclude, in countries where imprisonment with hard labor may be

          imposed as a punishment for a crime, the performance of hard labor in pursuance of a sentence to such

          punishment by a competent court;

 

          (c) For the purpose of this paragraph the term "forced or compulsory labor" shall not include:

 

               (i) Any work or service, not referred to in subparagraph (b), normally required of a person who

               is under detention in consequence of a lawful order of a court, or of a person during

               conditional release from such detention;

 

               (ii) Any service of a military character and, in countries where conscientious objection is

               recognized, any national service required by law of conscientious objectors;

 

               (iii) Any service exacted in cases of emergency or calamity threatening the life or well-being

               of the community;

 

               (iv) Any work or service which forms part of normal civil obligations.

 

Article 9 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. Everyone has the right to liberty and security of person. No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest or detention. No

     one shall be deprived of his liberty except on such grounds and in accordance with such procedure as are established by

     law.

 

     2. Anyone who is arrested shall be informed, at the time of arrest, of the reasons for his arrest and shall be promptly

     informed of any charges against him.

 

     3. Anyone arrested or detained on a criminal charge shall be brought promptly before a judge or other officer authorized

     by law to exercise judicial power and shall be entitled to trial within a reasonable time or to release. It shall not be the

     general rule that persons awaiting trial shall be detained in custody, but release may be subject to guarantees to appear

     for trial, at any other stage of the judicial proceedings, and, should occasion arise, for execution of the judgment.

 

     4. Anyone who is deprived of his liberty by arrest or detention shall be entitled to take proceedings before a court, in order

     that court may decide without delay on the lawfulness of his detention and order his release if the detention is not lawful.

 

     5. Anyone who has been the victim of unlawful arrest or detention shall have an enforceable right to compensation.

 

Article 10 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. All persons deprived of their liberty shall be treated with humanity and with respect for the inherent dignity of the human

     person.

 

     2.

 

          (a) Accused persons shall, save in exceptional circumstances, be segregated from convicted persons and

          shall be subject to separate treatment appropriate to their status as unconvicted persons;

 

          (b) Accused juvenile persons shall be separated from adults and brought as speedily as possible for

          adjudication. 3. The penitentiary system shall comprise treatment of prisoners the essential aim of which

          shall be their reformation and social rehabilitation. Juvenile offenders shall be segregated from adults and be

          accorded treatment appropriate to their age and legal status.

 

Article 11

 

     No one shall be imprisoned merely on the ground of inability to fulfill a contractual obligation.

 

Article 12 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. Everyone lawfully within the territory of a State shall, within that territory, have the right to liberty of movement and

     freedom to choose his residence.

 

     2. Everyone shall be free to leave any country, including his own.

 

     3. The above-mentioned rights shall not be subject to any restrictions except those which are provided by law, are

     necessary to protect national security, public order (order public), public health or morals or the rights and freedoms of

     others, and are consistent with the other rights recognized in the present Covenant.

 

     4. No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of the right to enter his own country.

     

 

Article 13

 

     An alien lawfully in the territory of a State Party to the present Covenant may be expelled therefrom only in pursuance of

     a decision reached in accordance with law and shall, except where compelling reasons of national security otherwise

     require, be allowed to submit the reasons against his expulsion and to have his case reviewed by, and be represented for

     the purpose before, the competent authority or a person or persons especially designated by the competent authority.

 

 

     2. Everyone charged with a criminal offence shall have the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to

     law.

 

Article 14 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. All persons shall be equal before the courts and tribunals. In the determination of any criminal charge against him, or

     of his rights and obligations in a suit at law, everyone shall be entitled to a fair and public hearing by a competent,

     independent and impartial tribunal established by law. The press and the public may be excluded from all or part of a trial

     for reasons of morals, public order (order public) or national security in a democratic society, or when the interest of the

     private lives of the parties so requires, or to the extent strictly necessary in the opinion of the court in special

     circumstances where publicity would prejudice the interests of justice; but any judgment rendered in a criminal case or

     in a suit at law shall be made public except where the interest of juvenile persons otherwise requires or the proceedings

     concern matrimonial disputes or the guardianship of children.

 

     2. Everyone charged with a criminal offence shall have the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to

     law.

 

     3. In the determination of any criminal charge against him, everyone shall be entitled to the following minimum

     guarantees, in full equality:

 

          (a) To be informed promptly and in detail in a language which he understands of the nature and cause of the

          charge against him;

 

          (b) To have adequate time and facilities for the preparation of his defense and to communicate with counsel

          of his own choosing;

 

          (c) To be tried without undue delay;

 

          (d) To be tried in his presence, and to defend himself in person or through legal assistance of his own

          choosing; to be informed, if he does not have legal assistance, of this right; and to have legal assistance

          assigned to him, in any case where the interests of justice so require, and without payment by him in any

          such case if he does not have sufficient means to pay for it;

 

          (e) To examine, or have examined, the witnesses against him and to obtain the attendance and

          examination of witnesses on his behalf under the same conditions as witnesses against him;

 

          (f) To have the free assistance of an interpreter if he cannot understand or speak the language used in

          court;

 

          (g) Not to be compelled to testify against himself or to confess guilt.

 

     4. In the case of juvenile persons, the procedure shall be such as will take account of their age and the desirability of

     promoting their rehabilitation.

 

     5. Everyone convicted of a crime shall have the right to his conviction and sentence being reviewed by a higher tribunal

     according to law.

 

     6. When a person has by a final decision been convicted of a criminal offence and when subsequently his conviction has

     been reversed or he has been pardoned on the ground that a new or newly discovered fact shows conclusively that there

     has been a miscarriage of justice, the person who has suffered punishment as a result of such conviction shall be

     compensated according to law, unless it is proved that the non-disclosure of the unknown fact in time is wholly or partly

     attributable to him.

 

     7. No one shall be liable to be tried or punished again for an offence for which he has already been finally convicted or

     acquitted in accordance with the law and penal procedure of each country.

 

Article 15

 

     1 . No one shall be held guilty of any criminal offence on account of any act or omission which did not constitute a

     criminal offence, under national or international law, at the time when it was committed. Nor shall a heavier penalty be

     imposed than the one that was applicable at the time when the criminal offence was committed. If, subsequent to the

     commission of the offence, provision is made by law for the imposition of the lighter penalty, the offender shall benefit

     thereby.

 

     2. Nothing in this article shall prejudice the trial and punishment of any person for any act or omission which, at the time

     when it was committed, was criminal according to the general principles of law recognized by the community of nations.

 

Article 16

 

     Everyone shall have the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law.

 

Article 17 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. No one shall be subjected to arbitrary or unlawful interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to

     unlawful attacks on his honor and reputation.

 

     2. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.

 

Article 18 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. Everyone shall have the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. This right shall include freedom to have or

     to adopt a religion or belief of his choice, and freedom, either individually or in community with others and in public or

     private, to manifest his religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and teaching.

 

     2. No one shall be subject to coercion which would impair his freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice.

 

     3. Freedom to manifest one's religion or beliefs may be subject only to such limitations as are prescribed by law and are

     necessary to protect public safety, order, health, or morals or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others. 4. The

     States Parties to the present Covenant undertake to have respect for the liberty of parents and, when applicable, legal

     guardians to ensure the religious and moral education of their children in conformity with their own convictions.

 

Article 19 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. Everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference.

 

     2. Everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart

     information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through

     any other media of his choice.

 

     3. The exercise of the rights provided for in paragraph 2 of this article carries with it special duties and responsibilities. It

     may therefore be subject to certain restrictions, but these shall only be such as are provided by law and are necessary:

 

          (a) For respect of the rights or reputations of others;

 

          (b) For the protection of national security or of public order (order public), or of public health or morals.

 

Article 20 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. Any propaganda for war shall be prohibited by law.

 

     2. Any advocacy of national, racial or religious hatred that constitutes incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence

     shall be prohibited by law.

 

Article 21

 

     The right of peaceful assembly shall be recognized. No restrictions may be placed on the exercise of this right other than

     those imposed in conformity with the law and which are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national

     security or public safety, public order (order public), the protection of public health or morals or the protection of the rights

     and freedoms of others.

 

Article 22

 

     1. Everyone shall have the right to freedom of association with others, including the right to form and join trade unions for

     the protection of his interests.

 

     2. No restrictions may be placed on the exercise of this right other than those which are prescribed by law and which are

     necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security or public safety, public order (order public), the

     protection of public health or morals or the protection of the rights and freedoms of others. This article shall not prevent

     the imposition of lawful restrictions on members of the armed forces and of the police in their exercise of this right.

 

     3. Nothing in this article shall authorize States Parties to the International Labor Organization Convention of 1948

     concerning Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organize to take legislative measures which would

     prejudice, or to apply the law in such a manner as to prejudice, the guarantees provided for in that Convention.

 

Article 23 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.

 

     2. The right of men and women of marriageable age to marry and to found a family shall be recognized.

 

     3. No marriage shall be entered into without the free and full consent of the intending spouses.

 

     4. States Parties to the present Covenant shall take appropriate steps to ensure equality of rights and responsibilities of

     spouses as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution. In the case of dissolution, provision shall be made for the

     necessary protection of any children.

 

Article 24 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. Every child shall have, without any discrimination as to race, color, sex, language, religion, national or social origin,

     property or birth, the right to such measures of protection as are required by his status as a minor, on the part of his

     family, society and the State.

 

     2. Every child shall be registered immediately after birth and shall have a name.

 

     3. Every child has the right to acquire a nationality.

 

Article 25 General comment on its implementation

 

     Every citizen shall have the right and the opportunity, without any of the distinctions mentioned in article 2 and without

     unreasonable restrictions:

 

          (a) To take part in the conduct of public affairs, directly or through freely chosen representatives;

 

          (b) To vote and to be elected at genuine periodic elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage

          and shall be held by secret ballot, guaranteeing the free expression of the will of the electors;

 

          (c) To have access, on general terms of equality, to public service in his country.

 

Article 26

 

     All persons are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to the equal protection of the law. In this

     respect, the law shall prohibit any discrimination and guarantee to all persons equal and effective protection against

     discrimination on any ground such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social

     origin, property, birth or other status.

 

Article 27 General comment on its implementation

 

     In those States in which ethnic, religious or linguistic minorities exist, persons belonging to such minorities shall not be

     denied the right, in community with the other members of their group, to enjoy their own culture, to profess and practice

     their own religion, or to use their own language.

 

                                              PART IV

 

Article 28

 

     1. There shall be established a Human Rights Committee (hereafter referred to in the present Covenant as the

     Committee). It shall consist of eighteen members and shall carry out the functions hereinafter provided.

 

     2. The Committee shall be composed of nationals of the States Parties to the present Covenant who shall be persons of

     high moral character and recognized competence in the field of human rights, consideration being given to the usefulness

     of the participation of some persons having legal experience.

 

     3. The members of the Committee shall be elected and shall serve in their personal capacity.

 

Article 29

 

     1 . The members of the Committee shall be elected by secret ballot from a list of persons possessing the qualifications

     prescribed in article 28 and nominated for the purpose by the States Parties to the present Covenant.

 

     2. Each State Party to the present Covenant may nominate not more than two persons. These persons shall be nationals

     of the nominating State.

 

     3. A person shall be eligible for renomination.

 

Article 30

 

     1. The initial election shall be held no later than six months after the date of the entry into force of the present Covenant.

 

     2. At least four months before the date of each election to the Committee, other than an election to fill a vacancy declared

     in accordance with article 34, the Secretary-General of the United Nations shall address a written invitation to the States

     Parties to the present Covenant to submit their nominations for membership of the Committee within three months.

 

     3. The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall prepare a list in alphabetical order of all the persons thus nominated,

     with an indication of the States Parties which have nominated them, and shall submit it to the States Parties to the

     present Covenant no later than one month before the date of each election.

 

     4. Elections of the members of the Committee shall be held at a meeting of the States Parties to the present Covenant

     convened by the Secretary General of the United Nations at the Headquarters of the United Nations. At that meeting, for

     which two thirds of the States Parties to the present Covenant shall constitute a quorum, the persons elected to the

     Committee shall be those nominees who obtain the largest number of votes and an absolute majority of the votes of the

     representatives of States Parties present and voting.

 

Article 31

 

     1. The Committee may not include more than one national of the same State.

 

     2. In the election of the Committee, consideration shall be given to equitable geographical distribution of membership and

     to the representation of the different forms of civilization and of the principal legal systems.

 

Article 32

 

     1. The members of the Committee shall be elected for a term of four years. They shall be eligible for re-election if

     renominated. However, the terms of nine of the members elected at the first election shall expire at the end of two years;

     immediately after the first election, the names of these nine members shall be chosen by lot by the Chairman of the

     meeting referred to in article 30, paragraph 4.

 

     2. Elections at the expiry of office shall be held in accordance with the preceding articles of this part of the present

     Covenant.

 

Article 33

 

     1. If, in the unanimous opinion of the other members, a member of the Committee has ceased to carry out his functions

     for any cause other than absence of a temporary character, the Chairman of the Committee shall notify the

     Secretary-General of the United Nations, who shall then declare the seat of that member to be vacant.

 

     2. In the event of the death or the resignation of a member of the Committee, the Chairman shall immediately notify the

     Secretary-General of the United Nations, who shall declare the seat vacant from the date of death or the date on which

     the resignation takes effect.

 

Article 34

 

     1. When a vacancy is declared in accordance with article 33 and if the term of office of the member to be replaced does

     not expire within six months of the declaration of the vacancy, the Secretary-General of the United Nations shall notify

     each of the States Parties to the present Covenant, which may within two months submit nominations in accordance with

     article 29 for the purpose of filling the vacancy.

 

     2. The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall prepare a list in alphabetical order of the persons thus nominated

     and shall submit it to the States Parties to the present Covenant. The election to fill the vacancy shall then take place in

     accordance with the relevant provisions of this part of the present Covenant.

 

     3. A member of the Committee elected to fill a vacancy declared in accordance with article 33 shall hold office for the

     remainder of the term of the member who vacated the seat on the Committee under the provisions of that article.

 

Article 35

 

     The members of the Committee shall, with the approval of the General Assembly of the United Nations, receive

     emoluments from United Nations resources on such terms and conditions as the General Assembly may decide, having

     regard to the importance of the Committee's responsibilities.

 

Article 36

 

     The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall provide the necessary staff and facilities for the effective performance of

     the functions of the Committee under the present Covenant.

 

Article 37

 

     1. The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall convene the initial meeting of the Committee at the Headquarters of

     the United Nations.

 

     2. After its initial meeting, the Committee shall meet at such times as shall be provided in its rules of procedure.

 

     3. The Committee shall normally meet at the Headquarters of the United Nations or at the United Nations Office at

     Geneva.

 

Article 38

 

     Every member of the Committee shall, before taking up his duties, make a solemn declaration in open committee that he

     will perform his functions impartially and conscientiously.

 

Article 39

 

     1. The Committee shall elect its officers for a term of two years. They may be re-elected.

 

     2. The Committee shall establish its own rules of procedure, but these rules shall provide, inter alia, that:

 

          (a) Twelve members shall constitute a quorum;

 

          (b) Decisions of the Committee shall be made by a majority vote of the members present.

 

Article 40

 

     1. The States Parties to the present Covenant undertake to submit reports on the measures they have adopted which give

     effect to the rights recognized herein and on the progress made in the enjoyment of those rights:

 

          (a) Within one year of the entry into force of the present Covenant for the States Parties concerned;

 

          (b) Thereafter whenever the Committee so requests.

 

     2. All reports shall be submitted to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, who shall transmit them to the

     Committee for consideration. Reports shall indicate the factors and difficulties, if any, affecting the implementation of the

     present Covenant.

 

     3. The Secretary-General of the United Nations may, after consultation with the Committee, transmit to the specialized

     agencies concerned copies of such parts of the reports as may fall within their field of competence.

 

     4. The Committee shall study the reports submitted by the States Parties to the present Covenant. It shall transmit its

     reports, and such general comments as it may consider appropriate, to the States Parties. The Committee may also

     transmit to the Economic and Social Council these comments along with the copies of the reports it has received from

     States Parties to the present Covenant.

 

     5. The States Parties to the present Covenant may submit to the Committee observations on any comments that may be

     made in accordance with paragraph 4 of this article.

 

Article 41 General comment on its implementation

 

     1. A State Party to the present Covenant may at any time declare under this article that it recognizes the competence of

     the Committee to receive and consider communications to the effect that a State Party claims that another State Party is

     not fulfilling its obligations under the present Covenant. Communications under this article may be received and

     considered only if submitted by a State Party which has made a declaration recognizing in regard to itself the

     competence of the Committee. No communication shall be received by the Committee if it concerns a State Party which

     has not made such a declaration. Communications received under this article shall be dealt with in accordance with the

     following procedure:

 

          (a) If a State Party to the present Covenant considers that another State Party is not giving effect to the

          provisions of the present Covenant, it may, by written communication, bring the matter to the attention of

          that State Party. Within three months after the receipt of the communication the receiving State shall afford

          the State which sent the communication an explanation, or any other statement in writing clarifying the

          matter which should include, to the extent possible and pertinent, reference to domestic procedures and

          remedies taken, pending, or available in the matter;

 

          (b) If the matter is not adjusted to the satisfaction of both States Parties concerned within six months after

          the receipt by the receiving State of the initial communication, either State shall have the right to refer the

          matter to the Committee, by notice given to the Committee and to the other State;

 

          (c) The Committee shall deal with a matter referred to it only after it has ascertained that all available

          domestic remedies have been invoked and exhausted in the matter, in conformity with the generally

          recognized principles of international law. This shall not be the rule where the application of the remedies is

          unreasonably prolonged;

 

          (d) The Committee shall hold closed meetings when examining communications under this article;

 

          (e) Subject to the provisions of subparagraph (c), the Committee shall make available its good offices to the

          States Parties concerned with a view to a friendly solution of the matter on the basis of respect for human

          rights and fundamental freedoms as recognized in the present Covenant;

 

          (f) In any matter referred to it, the Committee may call upon the States Parties concerned, referred to in

          subparagraph (b), to supply any relevant information;

 

          (g) The States Parties concerned, referred to in subparagraph (b), shall have the right to be represented

          when the matter is being considered in the Committee and to make submissions orally and/or in writing;

 

          (h) The Committee shall, within twelve months after the date of receipt of notice under subparagraph (b),

          submit a report:

 

               (i) If a solution within the terms of subparagraph (e) is reached, the Committee shall confine

               its report to a brief statement of the facts and of the solution reached;

 

               (ii) If a solution within the terms of subparagraph (e) is not reached, the Committee shall

               confine its report to a brief statement of the facts; the written submissions and record of the

               oral submissions made by the States Parties concerned shall be attached to the report. In

               every matter, the report shall be communicated to the States Parties concerned.

 

          2. The provisions of this article shall come into force when ten States Parties to the present Covenant have

          made declarations under paragraph I of this article. Such declarations shall be deposited by the States

          Parties with the Secretary-General of the United Nations, who shall transmit copies thereof to the other

          States Parties. A declaration may be withdrawn at any time by notification to the Secretary-General. Such

          a withdrawal shall not prejudice the consideration of any matter which is the subject of a communication

          already transmitted under this article; no further communication by any State Party shall be received after

          the notification of withdrawal of the declaration has been received by the Secretary-General, unless the

          State Party concerned has made a new declaration.

 

Article 42

 

     1.

 

          (a) If a matter referred to the Committee in accordance with article 41 is not resolved to the satisfaction of

          the States Parties concerned, the Committee may, with the prior consent of the States Parties concerned,

          appoint an ad hoc Conciliation Commission (hereinafter referred to as the Commission). The good offices of

          the Commission shall be made available to the States Parties concerned with a view to an amicable

          solution of the matter on the basis of respect for the present Covenant;

 

          (b) The Commission shall consist of five persons acceptable to the States Parties concerned. If the States

          Parties concerned fail to reach agreement within three months on all or part of the composition of the

          Commission, the members of the Commission concerning whom no agreement has been reached shall be

          elected by secret ballot by a two-thirds majority vote of the Committee from among its members.

 

     2. The members of the Commission shall serve in their personal capacity. They shall not be nationals of the States

     Parties concerned, or of a State not Party to the present Covenant, or of a State Party which has not made a declaration

     under article 41.

 

     3. The Commission shall elect its own Chairman and adopt its own rules of procedure.

 

     4. The meetings of the Commission shall normally be held at the Headquarters of the United Nations or at the United

     Nations Office at Geneva. However, they may be held at such other convenient places as the Commission may determine

     in consultation with the Secretary-General of the United Nations and the States Parties concerned.

 

     5. The secretariat provided in accordance with article 36 shall also service the commissions appointed under this article.

 

     6. The information received and collated by the Committee shall be made available to the Commission and the

     Commission may call upon the States Parties concerned to supply any other relevant information. 7. When the

     Commission has fully considered the matter, but in any event not later than twelve months after having been seized of the

     matter, it shall submit to the Chairman of the Committee a report for communication to the States Parties concerned:

 

          (a) If the Commission is unable to complete its consideration of the matter within twelve months, it shall

          confine its report to a brief statement of the status of its consideration of the matter;

 

          (b) If an amicable solution to the matter on tie basis of respect for human rights as recognized in the

          present Covenant is reached, the Commission shall confine its report to a brief statement of the facts and of

          the solution reached;

 

          (c) If a solution within the terms of subparagraph (b) is not reached, the Commission's report shall embody

          its findings on all questions of fact relevant to the issues between the States Parties concerned, and its

          views on the possibilities of an amicable solution of the matter. This report shall also contain the written

          submissions and a record of the oral submissions made by the States Parties concerned;

 

          (d) If the Commission's report is submitted under subparagraph (c), the States Parties concerned shall,

          within three months of the receipt of the report, notify the Chairman of the Committee whether or not they

          accept the contents of the report of the Commission.

 

     8. The provisions of this article are without prejudice to the responsibilities of the Committee under article 41.

 

     9. The States Parties concerned shall share equally all the expenses of the members of the Commission in accordance

     with estimates to be provided by the Secretary-General of the United Nations.

 

     10. The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall be empowered to pay the expenses of the members of the

     Commission, if necessary, before reimbursement by the States Parties concerned, in accordance with paragraph 9 of

     this article.

 

Article 43

 

     The members of the Committee, and of the ad hoc conciliation commissions which may be appointed under article 42,

     shall be entitled to the facilities, privileges and immunities of experts on mission for the United Nations as laid down in

     the relevant sections of the Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the United Nations.

 

Article 44

 

     The provisions for the implementation of the present Covenant shall apply without prejudice to the procedures prescribed

     in the field of human rights by or under the constituent instruments and the conventions of the United Nations and of the

     specialized agencies and shall not prevent the States Parties to the present Covenant from having recourse to other

     procedures for settling a dispute in accordance with general or special international agreements in force between them.

 

Article 45

 

     The Committee shall submit to the General Assembly of the United Nations, through the Economic and Social Council,

     an annual report on its activities.

 

                                              PART V

 

Article 46 .

 

     Nothing in the present Covenant shall be interpreted as impairing the provisions of the Charter of the United Nations and

     of the constitutions of the specialized agencies which define the respective responsibilities of the various organs of the

     United Nations and of the specialized agencies in regard to the matters dealt with in the present Covenant.

 

Article 47

 

     Nothing in the present Covenant shall be interpreted as impairing the inherent right of all peoples to enjoy and utilize fully

     and freely their natural wealth and resources.

 

                                              PART VI

 

Article 48

 

     1. The present Covenant is open for signature by any State Member of the United Nations or member of any of its

     specialized agencies, by any State Party to the Statute of the International Court of Justice, and by any other State

     which has been invited by the General Assembly of the United Nations to become a Party to the present Covenant.

 

     2. The present Covenant is subject to ratification. Instruments of ratification shall be deposited with the Secretary-General

     of the United Nations.

 

     3. The present Covenant shall be open to accession by any State referred to in paragraph 1 of this article.

 

     4. Accession shall be effected by the deposit of an instrument of accession with the Secretary-General of the United

     Nations.

 

     5. The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall inform all States which have signed this Covenant or acceded to it of

     the deposit of each instrument of ratification or accession.

 

Article 49

 

     1. The present Covenant shall enter into force three months after the date of the deposit with the Secretary-General of the

     United Nations of the thirty-fifth instrument of ratification or instrument of accession.

 

     2. For each State ratifying the present Covenant or acceding to it after the deposit of the thirty-fifth instrument of

     ratification or instrument of accession, the present Covenant shall enter into force three months after the date of the

     deposit of its own instrument of ratification or instrument of accession.

 

Article 50

 

     The provisions of the present Covenant shall extend to all parts of federal States without any limitations or exceptions.

 

Article 51

 

     1. Any State Party to the present Covenant may propose an amendment and file it with the Secretary-General of the

     United Nations. The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall thereupon communicate any proposed amendments to

     the States Parties to the present Covenant with a request that they notify him whether they favor a conference of States

     Parties for the purpose of considering and voting upon the proposals. In the event that at least one third of the States

     Parties favors such a conference, the Secretary-General shall convene the conference under the auspices of the United

     Nations. Any amendment adopted by a majority of the States Parties present and voting at the conference shall be

     submitted to the General Assembly of the United Nations for approval.

 

     2. Amendments shall come into force when they have been approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations and

     accepted by a two-thirds majority of the States Parties to the present Covenant in accordance with their respective

     constitutional processes. 3. When amendments come into force, they shall be binding on those States Parties which

     have accepted them, other States Parties still being bound by the provisions of the present Covenant and any earlier

     amendment which they have accepted.

 

Article 52

 

     Irrespective of the notifications made under article 48, paragraph 5, the Secretary-General of the United Nations shall

     inform all States referred to in paragraph I of the same article of the following particulars:

 

          (a) Signatures, ratifications and accessions under article 48;

 

          (b) The date of the entry into force of the present Covenant under article 49 and the date of the entry into

          force of any amendments under article 51.

 

Article 53

 

     1. The present Covenant, of which the Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish texts are equally authentic, shall

     be deposited in the archives of the United Nations.

 

     2. The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall transmit certified copies of the present Covenant to all States

     referred to in article 48.

 

 

http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu3/b/treaty5_asp.htm

 

United States of America

 

Reservations:

 

"(1) That article 20 does not authorize or require legislation or other action by the United States that would

restrict the right of free speech and association protected by the Constitution and laws of the United States.

 

"(2) That the United States reserves the right, subject to its Constitutional constraints, to impose capital

punishment on any person (other than a pregnant woman) duly convicted under existing or future laws permitting

the imposition of capital punishment, including such punishment for crimes committed by persons below

eighteen years of age.

 

"(3) That the United States considers itself bound by article 7 to the extent that `cruel, inhuman or degrading

treatment or punishment' means the cruel and unusual treatment or punishment prohibited by the Fifth, Eighth,

and/or Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution of the United States.

 

"(4) That because U.S. law generally applies to an offender the penalty in force at the time the offence was

committed, the United States does not adhere to the third clause of paragraph 1 of article 15.

 

"(5) That the policy and practice of the United States are generally in compliance with and supportive of the

Covenant's provisions regarding treatment of juveniles in the criminal justice system. Nevertheless, the United

States reserves the right, in exceptional circumstances, to treat juveniles as adults, notwithstanding paragraphs

2 (b) and 3 of article 10 and paragraph 4 of article 14. The United States further reserves to these provisions

with respect to States with respect to individuals who volunteer for military service prior to age 18."

 

Understandings:

 

"(1) That the Constitution and laws of the United States guarantee all persons equal protection of the law and

provide extensive protections against discrimination. The United States understands distinctions based upon

race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or any

other status - as those terms are used in article 2, paragraph 1 and article 26 - to be permitted when such

distinctions are, at minimum, rationally related to a legitimate governmental objective. The United States further

understands the prohibition in paragraph 1 of article 4 upon discrimination, in time of public emergency, based

`solely' on the status of race, colour, sex, language, religion or social origin, not to bar distinctions that may have

a disproportionate effect upon persons of a particular status.

 

"(2) That the United States understands the right to compensation referred to in articles 9 (5) and 14 (6) to

require the provision of effective and enforceable mechanisms by which a victim of an unlawful arrest or

detention or a miscarriage of justice may seek and, where justified, obtain compensation from either the

responsible individual or the appropriate governmental entity. Entitlement to compensation may be subject to

the reasonable requirements of domestic law.

 

"(3) That the United States understands the reference to `exceptional circumstances' in paragraph 2 (a) of

article 10 to permit the imprisonment of an accused person with convicted persons where appropriate in light of

an individual's overall dangerousness, and to permit accused persons to waive their right to segregation from

convicted persons. The United States further understands that paragraph 3 of article 10 does not diminish the

goals of punishment, deterrence, and incapacitation as additional legitimate purposes for a penitentiary

system.

 

"(4) That the United States understands that subparagraphs 3 (b) and (d) of article 14 do not require the

provision of a criminal defendant's counsel of choice when the defendant is provided with court-appointed

counsel on grounds of indigence, when the defendant is financially able to retain alternative counsel, or when

imprisonment is not imposed. The United States further understands that paragraph 3 (e) does not prohibit a

requirement that the defendant make a showing that any witness whose attendance he seeks to compel is

necessary for his defense. The United States understands the prohibition upon double jeopardy in paragraph 7

to apply only when the judgment of acquittal has been rendered by a court of the same governmental unit,

whether the Federal Government or a constituent unit, as is seeking a new trial for the same cause.

 

"(5) That the United States understands that this Covenant shall be implemented by the Federal Government to

the extent that it exercises legislative and judicial jurisdiction over the matters covered therein, and otherwise by

the state and local governments; to the extent that state and local governments exercise jurisdiction over such

matters, the Federal Government shall take measures appropriate to the Federal system to the end that the

competent authorities of the state or local governments may take appropriate measures for the fulfillment of the

Covenant."

 

Declarations:

 

"(1) That the United States declares that the provisions of articles 1 through 27 of the Covenant are not

self-executing.

 

"(2) That it is the view of the United States that States Party to the Covenant should wherever possible refrain

from imposing any restrictions or limitations on the exercise of the rights recognized and protected by the

Covenant, even when such restrictions and limitations are permissible under the terms of the Covenant. For the

United States, article 5, paragraph 2, which provides that fundamental human rights existing in any State Party

may not be diminished on the pretext that the Covenant recognizes them to a lesser extent, has particular

relevance to article 19, paragraph 3 which would permit certain restrictions on the freedom of expression. The

United States declares that it will continue to adhere to the requirements and constraints of its Constitution in

respect to all such restrictions and limitations.

 

"(3) That the United States declares that the right referred to in article 47 may be exercised only in accordance

with international law."