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Title: Human trafficking, human rights and the right to be free from slavery, servitude and forced labour
Author: Jovanović, Marija
ISNI:       0000 0004 6498 3237
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2016
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The thesis engages with a dynamic discourse on the human rights approach to human trafficking. Building on the traditional doctrine of human rights, the thesis demonstrates that human trafficking is not a human rights violation, save for a state involvement in it, either directly or through a failure to observe its positive obligations imposed by the existent human rights. In situations that do engage human rights law, the thesis defends an argument that conceptually, human trafficking falls within a domain of the right to be free from slavery, servitude and forced labour. This argument is grounded in both a doctrinal and a conceptual analysis. In particular, the thesis conducts a unique conceptual and legal analysis of Article 4 of the European Convention of Human Rights offering an original interpretation of the concept of exploitation in the context of practices associated with trafficking and 'modern slavery'. This type of inquiry is missing in the existent scholarship. The thesis also conducts a detailed analysis of the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights on positive obligations to protect vulnerable individuals arising out of 'absolute' rights. In addition to providing a complete analysis and classification of these positive obligations, the thesis draws attention to the important difference between the scope of the right and the scope of state responsibility in situations of private infringements of 'absolute' rights. Accordingly, the thesis demonstrates that whereas the prohibition contained in these rights is absolute for the state, positive obligations in situations of their infringements by private individuals are of a limited scope. The analysis of the jurisprudence of the Strasbourg Court is supplemented by a comprehensive discussion of the obligations established in the trafficking-specific instruments. The thesis explains how victim protection provisions contained in these instruments may inform human rights obligations, yet, it demonstrates that these do not represent such obligations on their own. This analysis provides a roadmap for practitioners and activists when arguing cases before the Strasbourg Court and domestically. In addition to this practical dimension, the thesis intends to provide an important contribution to the scholarship on human rights law, and on human trafficking specifically.
Supervisor: Lazarus, Liora Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Human trafficking (International law) ; Human rights ; Forced labor--Law and legislation--European Union countries