Coalition board member, Frank Koszorus, Jr., coauthored an article with Csaba K. Zoltani, a senior researcher with the Army Research Laboratory, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, entitled “Group Rights Defuse Tensions” which was published in the summer/fall volume of the prestigious journal, The Fletcher Forum of World Affairs.
The authors make a compelling case for the recognition and enforcement of group rights as a means of promoting democracy and stability in Central and East Europe.
The authors address the legitimate aspirations of ethnic minorities in Central Europe to preserve their cultural and historical identities. They place the concept of group rights in its historical context, review current international legal standards, and identify successful Western European solutions to the grievances of ethnic minorities. The authors recognize the markedly different historical experiences of the United States and Central Europe. They persuasively argue that the United States must nevertheless take the lead in “formulating the legal basis for group human rights” if only to advance its security interests and to “avoid becoming entangled in future conflicts.”
The authors then suggest that “the recognition of non-territorially defined autonomy of conationals” would help solve the minorities question. This concept, they explain, “is based on the idea of shared spaces and complementary and overlapping jurisdictions in the cultural field, with special emphasis on linguistic rights.”
The protection of minorities in Central Europe, the authors conclude, will “promote not only democratic values but will also help defuse seemingly intractable disputes.”
Mr. Koszorus, one of the co-founders of the Coalition, practices law in Washington, D.C. He has lectured and written about minority rights and was a Study Group participant in a Carnegie Endowment for International Peace project which culminated in a book on self-determination. In 1989 Mr. Koszorus was appointed a public member of the U.S. delegation to the Paris meeting of the CSCE Conference on the Human Dimension.
Copies of the article can be obtained from the Coalition.