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William Onzivu


State centred discourse on international law and human rights often diminishes the obligations of global health institutions in international law to advance health related human rights and as sites for the progressive development and implementation of health rights. The constitution of the World Health Organization (WHO) provides an expansive role for human rights protection and promotion in realizing public health, but WHO has faced hurdles in effectively carrying out this role. Current scholarship continues to underscore the normative challenges facing WHO concerning its limited use of international law including human rights to promote health. This article goes a step further and explores the evolving international legal and institutional basis for WHO’s future direction in strengthening the governance of human rights. It revisits WHO’s evolving and expanding human rights mandate, challenges and prospects within WHO law, the broader United Nations law, policy and practice as well as general international law. Despite the limitations, WHO has evolving institutional mechanisms rooted in international law that comprise a pivotal site for human rights normative and operational work at the global, regional and domestic levels. The article examines these mechanisms and suggests concrete ways and options in which WHO can advance health rights.

William Thomas Worster

This submission challenges the presumption that uk nationals will lose eu citizenship following Brexit. Until now, the dominant narrative has been drawn from the law on treaties or international organizations, and this article adds the human rights perspective to Brexit. Firstly, eu citizenship can be assimilated to nationality. While eu citizenship is unique, the status protected under international law is a legal bond a person has with a political entity. This protection certainly covers nationality, and this paper argues it can be understood to also protect eu citizenship. Secondly, international law prohibits arbitrary withdrawal of this legal bond with a person. The uk does not have jurisdiction over eu citizenship, so it is doubtful the uk can terminate eu citizenship unilaterally. Even if the eu were to withdraw eu citizenship on its initiative, it would still constitute retroactive law, discrimination, and infringement of sovereignty. It is also disproportionate, because the loss of eu citizenship is not necessary for Brexit. When Greenland withdrew from the eu, its residents retained eu citizenship. For these reasons, the revocation of eu citizenship would be arbitrary. A distinction must be made between the membership of a state in the eu which can be terminated, and the direct legal bond formed between a person and the Union, which is far harder to revoke. On this basis, any uk national who has acquired eu citizenship prior to Brexit, should not be divested of it following Brexit.