Principle of international law that mandates states to exercise due diligence in preventing and investigating violations of human rights, providing protection to victims, punishing perpetrators and compensating the victim for human rights violations. 

Additional notes and information

The obligation extends to not only preventing human rights abuses by the state and its agents, but also to preventing those by the private sector or, most significantly for women, by private citizens.

In the past, states have tended to adopt a passive attitude when confronted with cases of violations of women’s rights by private actors. The legal foundation requiring ‘due diligence’ is thus solidly anchored in four decades of treaties, conventions and international case law


CEDAW Committee’s jurisprudence developed through the committee’s General Recommendations and views and recommendations issued upon consideration of complaints under the Optional Protocol to the CEDAW Convention.