The Universality Test
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The underappreciated role played by Middle Eastern states in the genesis of key international human rights instruments such as the International Bill of Human Rights is one finally given due attention and emphasis in the third chapter. Conflicting interpretations of the Middle East’s participation in this process are visited, in order to weigh the region’s overarching impact on the development of the contemporary international human rights regime. This chapter further tests cultural relativistic claims about the incompatibility of cultural and religious values such as Islam with human rights. It also challenges the assumption of the distinctively Western nature of the UN human rights system.