Spring 2008 Symposium: The 60th Anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights: A Reality Check: Ethics of International Civil Service: A Reflection on How the Care of United Nations' Staff Impacts the Ability to Fulfill Their Role in "Harmonizing" the World Skip over navigation
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Copyright (c) 2009 Hamline Journal of Public Law & Policy 
Hamline Journal of Public Law & Policy

Spring 2008 Symposium: The 60th Anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights: A Reality Check: Ethics of International Civil Service: A Reflection on How the Care of United Nations' Staff Impacts the Ability to Fulfill Their Role in "Harmonizing" the World

Fall, 2008

Hamline Journal of Public Law & Policy

30 Hamline J. Pub. L. & Pol'y 175

Author

Dina Francesca Haynes*

Excerpt

 
The United Nations was founded with a mighty mission in mind: the creation of an institution which would facilitate harmony in the world. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, there were more than fifteen thousand international civil servants posted in countries and territories all over the world, and the jobs they carry out often require them to put their lives at risk. 2 They work in refugee camps, on humanitarian missions, as peacekeepers, as human rights investigators after violent wars, in post conflict administration, and in some quieter roles under calmer circumstances. These men and women, employees of the United Nations (UN) and its associate specialized agencies, 3 drive the machinery that binds together the nations and regions of the modern world.

I. What are International Civil Servants?
 
Placing the rights of the individual above or outside the will or ability of his or her nation to provide those rights is a notion born of the human rights movement. Before the inception of the UN and before the concept of human rights was a commonly understood, let alone a commonly agreed upon principle, the international stage was occupied only by States; the individual had no official place in it. With the creation of the UN, the persons who now fill its ranks and hallways are individuals with a place on that international stage, as only States and their representative diplomats had before.

Half a century after the first international civil servants were appointed, the UN is ...
 
 
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