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8 Hum. Rts. & Int'l Legal Discourse 2 (2014)

handle is hein.journals/hurandi8 and id is 1 raw text is: THE INTERRELATIONSHIP BETWEEN
HUMAN RIGHTS AND CLIMATE CHANGE
ARRON HONNIBALL and CEDRIC RYNGAERT*
This special issue has its roots in the 2013 celebrations commemorating the 300th
anniversary of the Peace of Utrecht.' The signing of the Peace of Utrecht in 1713 was
the culmination of 18 months of negotiations between the major European powers of
the time to help settle the War of the Spanish Succession.2 It marked the beginning of
modern diplomacy, resolving the warfare that had ravaged Europe and spread across
the globe, with discussion and agreement displacing continuing warfare. Thus the
treaty marked an important goal for which the international community should always
strive: the 'creation of conditions conducive to lasting peace.3
The Peace of Utrecht 2013 celebrations involved a series of public events which
aimed to recognise this cultural legacy - the living legacy of the Peace of Utrecht. The
Treaty of Utrecht Foundation, together with Utrecht University, formulated three key
legacy principles (the Utrecht Principles); '(1) respect for cultural, ethnic and religious
diversity; (2) harnessing the power of art and multiculturalism to create a sustainable
society; (3) the exchange of knowledge to promote social cohesion and renewal'.
These principles were to inform a number of conferences, including the one
that forms the basis of this special issue. On 10 October 2013, Utrecht University's
Human Rights and Conflict Programme held a special conference on Human Rights
and Climate Change.5 The conference's approach was not to analyse the realisation
of human rights or minorities' rights anno 1713, but rather to turn its gaze towards
Dr Cedric Ryngaert is an associate professor of international law at Utrecht University and Leuven
University. Arron Honniball is a PhD Candidate at Utrecht University. The authors wish to thank Prof
Jenny Goldschmidt for her invaluable input on the previous draft of this introduction.
1    The Peace of Utrecht 2013. Further information on the schedule and celebrations is available at www.
vredevanutrecht2013.nl/en (last accessed 5 March 2014).
2    The Peace of Utrecht was in fact a series of bilateral treaties. The Utrecht Treaty proper was later
followed by the Treaties of Rastatt and Baden, which ended Holy Roman Emperor Charles VIs
attempts at continued warfare and succession claims.
3    See the principles identified by the Peace of Utrecht 2013, available at www.vredevanutrecht20l3.nl/
en/about/the-utrecht-principles (last accessed 5 March 2014).
4    Ibid.
5    The conference was co-organised by Prof Jenny Goldschmidt and Dr Cedric Ryngaert.

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