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Amon said that signing the treaty sent a broader signal about US respect for international law."For nearly a decade, the US has been on the sidelinesas new treaties have been developed and existing treaties gained international support," he said. "By signing the Disabilities Convention, the US is beginning to reassert leadershipon international human rights."Westminster Debate
Westmonster 2009-10184File NameEllis AllenHUMAN RIGHTS CRED—NO IMPACTEU fills in, solves the impactBrimmer 02(Deputy Director and Director of Research at the Center forTransatlantic Relations at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at TheJohns Hopkins University, “The United States and the European Union, and International Human Rights Issues”,)For the European Union, human rights policy also plays an important role in its external affairs. This section will explore the principle instruments of EU human rights policy and will consider the connections between EU human rights policy and the nature of European societies and the foreign policy implications of those links. The EU describes itself as a community of values. The Amsterdam Treaty proclaims that “the Union is founded on the principles ofliberty, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms and the rule of law.”8 The main goals of European Union human rights policy are “to uphold the universality, interdependence and indivisibility of all human rights— civil and political as well as economic, social, and cultural” and to accomplish this goal by “the process of ‘mainstreaming’ human rights and democratization objectives into all aspects of EU external and internal policies.”9 Mainstreaming is a manifestation of a long-standing debate within human rights policy. The question is: Is it more effective for outside governments to have a special conversation with leaders of states that abuse human rights, to highlight the importance of the issue? Or is it more effective to interweave human rights into diplomatic discussions about other issues such as trade, thereby signaling that human rights are as important as the other topics and that success in other relationships cannot be achieved without progress on human rights? The European Union and the United States use a mix of both approaches. However, theEU’s “mainstreaming” approach represents a decision to emphasize the latter strategy. The EU’s principal human rights tools are bilateral talks, human rights clauses in trade agreements, and actions in multilateral fora. This paper argues that the EU has tended to take a cooperativeapproach to international human rights. Ideally it canmean a willingness to support the long-term, low-key engagement that can help societies transform.