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Below are links by topical categories to resources primarily in English providing information on human rights generally and as it relates to U.S. foreign policy. For regional information, please see related links at Regional Resources: Americas and Regional Resources: Africa, specifically Rwanda. For information on genocide, please see Genocide Convention at Fifty: Web Links. For more USIP resources see the human rights issue page.

These links complement several Institute Special Reports:

  1. U.S. Human Rights Policy: a 20-Year Assessment
  2. The Role of the Ambassador in Promoting U.S. Human Rights Policy Abroad
  3. U.S. Human Rights Policy toward Latin America
  4. U.S. Human Rights Policy toward Africa
  5. Advancing Human Rights and Peace in a Complex World
  6. Building the Iraqi Special Tribunal: Lessons from Experiences in International Criminal Justice.

General Resources

The sites below collect links to other Internet resources in human rights.

  • American Society of International Law
    The ASIL Guide to Electronic Resources for International Law has a an excellent chapter on human rights , covering "general tips for doing research as well as for locating necessary documents and materials." Formats covered include CD-ROMs, Internet, online services. Comprehensive coverage includes discussion of and numerous links on a brief history of human rights law, bibliographic databases and online catalogs, research guides and bibliographies, periodical indexes, primary sources, organizations, reports, lists and newsgroups.
  • Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, Washington College of Law, American University
    The Center's web site features a database of annual, special and sessions reports of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, a Human Rights Brief with full text of articles available online, links to other human rights sites, a site map and search engine.
  • Derechos Human Rights
    The Derechos organization web site hosts the web presence of human rights organizations, publishes an internet journal jointly with Equipo Nizkor, maintains several mailing lists (including one on human rights in the Americas), contains pages on human rights issues in various regions of the world; the Human Rights in Latin America section is produced by Derechos and Equipo Nizkor.
  • Human Rights Internet
    Based in Ottawa, Human Rights Internet (HRI) provides relevant information to more than 5,000 organizations involved in human rights. The HRI web site features publications, a directory of partner organizations, and a Human Rights Databank; the latter integrates several databases and other electronic resources on the HRI web site, including an Internet Directory of human rights web sites, a world calendar of events, a Human Rights Education Directory and an a collection of electronic human rights documentation in its E-Doc Centre.
  • Human Rights Reporting: Primary Web Resources
    Extensive set of links prepared by Frederic A. Moritz, former foreign correspondent for The Christian Science Monitor. Part of his web site on "American Human Rights Reporting as a Global Watchdog," the links cover numerous general resources, organizations, search tools, regional information and news sources, as well as journalism-related topics.
  • University of Minnesota Human Rights Library
    Well-organized and comprehensive site on human rights, international law and related topics. Part of the Diana joint project among four law schools, this site maintains excellent subject and keyword searching of documents and links to other organizations.

Government Agencies, Non-Governmental and International Organizations

Amnesty International

Business for Social Responsibility (BSR)

Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ)

Human Rights First

Human Rights Watch

  • Human Rights Watch (HRW)
    The HRW web site includes background information about the organization, a current events section, publications, annual reports, information about specific campaigns and links to additional resources.

International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)

  • International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
    The ICRC web site describes the ICRC's mission, its operations in various countries, issues and topics, such as land mines. A special section on International Humanitarian Law includes a searchable database of "91 treaties and texts, commentaries on the four Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols, an up-to-date list of signatures, ratifications relating to IHL treaties and full text of reservations."

International Labour Organization (ILO)

Organization of American States

Physicians for Human Rights

  • Physicians for Human Rights
    Web site includes a description of the organization, news, a news archive, campaigns, investigations, reports, and links to related web sites.

Speak Truth to Power

  • Speak Truth to Power
    USIP Board member Kerry Kennedy's "Speak Truth To Power" is dedicated to the promotion of human rights awareness. A not-for-profit organization that seeks to proactively engage the general public in an ongoing series of issue-related programs and events, bringing human rights activists and their work into contact with ever-increasing audiences. Through the combined power of arts and education, Speak Truth to Power aims not only to inspire, but also to empower individuals and communities to take up the defense of human rights. The web site includes news and resources related to human rights: a timeline; a section on current issues; a short history; a listing of organizations and specific individuals, termed The Defenders, committed to the cause of human rights.

United Nations

United States

  • National Endowment for Democracy
    A "private, nonprofit, grant-making organization created in 1983 to strengthen democratic institutions around the world," the web site includes statements, publications including Journal of Democracy, press releases, links to the grants program, numerous links to other web resources and databases on democracy projects and experts.
  • U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)
    USAID, "an independent federal government agency that conducts foreign assistance and humanitarian aid to advance the political and economic interests of the United States" outlines, on the web site, its goals on democracy and its strategies for sustainable development. (PDF file requires Adobe® Acrobat® Reader to view). The web site also includes links for economic growth, humanitarian assistance, development, and information on USAID projects in specific countries and regions.
  • U.S. State Department: Democracy, Human Rights and Labor Bureau (DRL)
    "One of the four bureaus that comprise the Office of the Under Secretary for Global Affairs, DRL's wide range of responsibilities include promoting democracy worldwide, formulating U.S. human rights policies, and coordinating policy in human rights-related labor issues." The archived web site includes links to the annual country reports, the Advisory Committee on Religious Freedom Abroad, additional speeches, statements, testimony and briefings, and other State Department web sites.
  • U.S. Department of State: Office of the Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues
    Archived web site from the U.S. Department of State, covering the period August 5, 1997-January 20, 2001. Includes remarks from Ambassador David Scheffer, a list of atrocity areas, a discussion of atrocity prevention, laws, publications and related web sites.

Selected Documents and Publications

Updated: March 27, 2009

Related Publications

Truth Commission Digital Collection

Truth Commission Digital Collection

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The United States Institute of Peace’s Truth Commissions Digital Collection is part of the Margarita S. Studemeister Digital Library in International Conflict Management.  The collection contains profiles of truth commissions and substantive bodies of inquiry from nations worldwide - offering general background information on the composition of each body, links to the official legislative texts establishing such commissions, and each commission's final reports and findings.

Conflict Analysis & Prevention; Human Rights

Framing the State in Times of Transition

Framing the State in Times of Transition

Thursday, April 1, 2010

By: Laurel E. Miller; with Louis Aucoin

Analyzing nineteen cases, Framing the State in Times of Transition offers the first in-depth, practical perspective on the implications of constitution-making procedure, and explores emerging international legal norms.

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Voting in Fear

Thursday, November 1, 2012

By: Dorina A. Bekoe; editor

In Voting in Fear, nine contributors offer pioneering work on the scope and nature of electoral violence in Africa; investigate the forms electoral violence takes; and analyze the factors that precipitate, reduce, and prevent violence. The book breaks new ground with findings from the only known dataset of electoral violence in sub-Saharan Africa, spanning 1990 to 2008. Specific case studies of electoral violence in countries such as Ghana, Kenya, and Nigeria provide the context to further un...

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