International Human Rights Day

On 10 December we celebrate human rights, in commemoration of the day when the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. That Declaration forms the backbone of the human rights architecture of our societies, where each of us – without discrimination – has the right to live and thrive in peace and safety.

Since its adoption, laws and, policies embracing human rights have made us freer. Children can assert their needs, women can make their own choices, persons with disabilities can live more independently, and we all enjoy safeguards against tyranny and abuse. But this acquis is not for granted. Worse, it is under threat.

As you read this message, there are people trapped in conflict zones; men, women and children who die while seeking our protection; people who are left at the margin of society and discriminated; people who continue to be repressed, beaten or killed because they seek the truth or just express themselves. People who are still locked-up in their disability, or who are trafficked and exploited.

But none of this is inevitable and we all have a crucial role to play, no matter how small.

This Human Rights Day, consider how essential human rights are for each person and let’s use them every day as our compass to seek justice, equality, peace and freedom for all.

Universal declaration of Human Rights

Human Rights Day is observed by the international community every year on 10 December. It commemorates the day in 1948 the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Here are the 10 first articles grounding our Rights and Freedom:

  • Article 1: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights
  • Article 2: Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status
  • Article 3: Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person
  • Article 4: No one shall be held in slavery or servitude
  • Article 5: No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment
  • Article 6: Everyone has the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law
  • Article 7: All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law
  • Article 8: Everyone has the right to an effective remedy by the competent national tribunals for acts violating the fundamental rights granted him by the constitution or by law
  • Article 9: No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile
  • Article 10: Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him