Human rights for people’s sovereignty

The recent booklet by Rolf Künnemann, co-founder of FIAN International, takes the readers to the fundamentals of human rights and to the current conceptual debates and struggles about their future.

Starting with the political question of “how to govern over transnational corporations?”, Künnemann warns that the concept of human rights is currently under attack, not only by their enemies, but also by “some of their friends”.Künnemann recalls that human rights are not morals, but a special type of rights with a unique political function: human rights establish, obligate and control the powers of States and their community. 

He raises some fundamental questions: What is a crime? Who has human rights obligations? What is a violation? What is the difference between human rights and human rights law? 

Künnemann strongly criticizes the corporate capture of human rights. This notion refers to the corporate dream of turning human rights from a regulatory threat for them into a PR-machinery to their advantage. Corporations now invest heavily in “human rights”. Despite its painstaking and sometimes controversial conceptual analysis – “Human Rights for People’s Sovereignty” is a passionate call upon people to assert their ownership of human rights as part of their political sovereignty. 

You can download the publication here.