A general reflection on the term human rights suggests that they are rights that belong to all human beings in virtue of their common humanity. Human rights are said to be universal because they exist for the benefit of all people irrespective of nationality, race, class, gender, and so on. They constitute mandatory norms of high priority that impose duties on others to respect, protect, and fulfill fundamental interests of the individual rights-holder. If the oldest and perhaps best known examples of human rights are civil and political rights such as freedom of religion, freedom of speech and expression, or the right not to be tortured, the contemporary debate has witnessed a considerable expansion of interests they are said to protect, including the right to ...

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