International law and aboriginal peoples

AuthorGib van Ert
 International law and
aboriginal peoples
In the past, the intersection of public international law and the Canad-
ian law of ab original r ights has not been very fruit ful. Internationa l
law has had rather little to say on the rights of indigenous peoples.
ere is a near tota l absence of binding instruments specif‌ical ly ad-
dressing them. Perhaps as a result, Canadian aboriginal law has de-
veloped l argely independently f rom international legal requirements,
though inter national scrutiny has sometimes played a role in the de -
velopment of Canadian pol icy. But indigenous peoples continue to
press their case on the world stage. e development of international
legal norms concerning i ndigenous rights may yet come to pass. In the
meantime, internationa l legal issues are entering Can adian aboriginal
law in a new way, through the est ablishment of sub-federal aborig inal
governments in comprehensive claims ag reements between aboriginal
peoples and Canadia n governments.
. International legal provisions on indigenous peoples
e international human rights movement that began after the Second
World War has tended to move from the general to t he specif‌ic. Early
instruments were universal in scope, pur porting to apply to people
whatever their race, gender, or status. L ater treaties have sought to
For example, Unive rsal Declaratio n of Human Rights  GA R es  A (III),
UN Doc. A/; Inter national Covenant on C ivil and Politica l Rights  []
CanTS no. ; Internat ional Covenant on Economic , Social and Cultu ral Rights
 [] CanTS no. . An except ion is the United Nations Convention R elat-
ing to the Statu s of Refugees  [] CanTS no.  and [] CanTS no. .

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