The second half of the twentieth century has witnessed a strive of the international community to promote respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms
everywhere in the world. Within this context, the greatest achievement of the United Nations (UN) system is considered to be the creation of a body of
international human rights instruments and laws, amongst them those pertaining to the administration of justice and the protection of prisoners. The present article reviews the concept of international human rights law, the instruments relating to the protection of prisoners and the way these instruments address the issue of women prisoners.