“Soft Law” and Informal Standard-Setting in the Area of Counterterrorism

The Impact on Civil Society and Civic Space


This briefing paper, authored by Dr. Krisztina Huszti-Orban and Prof. Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, addresses the proliferation of new institutions and the “soft” law standards they produce, with particular emphasis on the implications of these developments on the functioning of civil society organizations and civic space. It builds on an earlier report on the misuse of counterterrorism measures to restrict civic space.

This briefing paper was prepared under the aegis of the Mandate of the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism. It was partially funded by the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law and published by the University of Minnesota Human Rights Center.