Human Rights

You Scratch My Back and I Scratch Yours

What motivates authoritarian states to participate in naming and shaming behaviors on human rights? The Universal Periodic Review is a unique process that requires all UN members to participate in peer review on human rights issues and has already finished its third cycle with active participation from all members since 2008. In this paper, we argue that authoritarian states use the peer review process as a means of legitimation. We expect the authoritarian states to be more lenient towards other authoritarian regimes to increase their legitimacy while being stricter towards democratic counterparts on critical issues to their regime stability. We test our expectations using a large-N sample of dyads in which we compare the peer reviews of the UPR between 2008 and 2019 with different dyads of democracies and authoritarian regimes.

Who Speaks and Who Listens?

Why are some countries more active in “shaming” others publicly? When states engage in naming and shaming towards one another’s performance in human rights, it is easily assumed that states with more capabilities and better human rights conditions would actively name and shame abusers. However, according to the previous research, states do not always shame abusers; states are more favorable and lenient to their friends. Building on this notion, I argue that the decision to shame another country publicly is also based on concerns with relative status in the international system as they participate in the process. By observing the United Nations Universal Periodic Review (UPR), I find a curvilinear relationship between a state’s status and its shaming behaviors in UPR. States with middle status are more eager to participate, and if they are making recommendations, they tend to make more demanding ones.

Korea’s Middle Power Diplomacy for Human Security

This study aims to discuss characteristics and limits of Koreas human security-oriented policies in global and regional dimensions as a core tool of identifying itself middle power country. Having recognized a global-regional divide in Koreas positions and leverage, the paper argues that its middle power diplomacy should distinguish the global and regional levels in planning strategies. The paper also argues that it is more realistic for Korea to purse soft power to induce support and agreement from other states rather than hard power to muddle through regional power competition. Yet, given the possibility where its endeavor can be thwarted by its the regional dynamics of the great power politics, it is equally important for Korea to secure a sizable amount of hard power, like financial and military might. Taking the case of the human security diplomacy, which is a distinctive example of soft power strategies, the paper reviews what issues and challenges have been in Koreas quest for middle power leadership on the human security agenda, as well as to evaluate whether the countrys efforts positively or adversely affect its diplomatic status as a middle power. The cases of Canada, Australia, and Japan are examined so that we may draw a lesson for Koreas middle power diplomacy. All three countries actively pursue soft power diplomacy, including the substantive contribution to human security agenda, for the sake of their international contribution and national interest. While Australia and Canada have achieved their expected objectives, Japan does not seem to have done so.