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Spijkers, Otto.  The United Nations, the Evolution of Global Values and International Law. Antwerp: Intersentia, 2011.

In this book, Otto Spijkers describes how moral values have determined the founding of the United Nations Organization in 1945 and the evolution of its purposes, principles and policies since then. A detailed examination of the proceedings of the United Nations Conference on International Organization in San Francisco demonstrates that the drafting of the United Nations Charter was significantly influenced by global moral values, i.e. globally shared beliefs distinguishing right from wrong, good from bad, and the current from a preferable state-of-the-world. A common desire to eradicate war, poverty, inhuman treatment, and to halt the exploitation of peoples, has led to an affirmation of the values of peace and security, social progress and development, human dignity and the self-determination of all peoples. All these values ended up in the UN Charter. The book further analyzes how the United Nations, and especially its General Assembly, has continued to influence the maturing of global morality through contributions to the values-debate, and to the translation of these values into the language of international law, including the law on the use of force, sustainable development, human rights and the right to self-determination.

Entry Submitted by: Otto Spijkers

About the author of this entry: Otto Spijkers is Assistant Professor of Public International Law at Utrecht University. He was also guest lecturer at the Association pour la promotion des droits de l’homme en Afrique centrale(APDHAC) of the Université catholique d’Afrique centrale (Yaoundé, Cameroon) and Leiden University. He is also a member of the Committee on the Role of International Law in Sustainable Natural Resource Management for Development of the International Law Association.

For more information on the author, please visit: http://www.uu.nl/leg/staff/OSpijkers/0.