On 10 December 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). This groundbreaking document set a high standard for the universal protection of fundamental and indivisible human rights and thus became a shared achievement of the Nations.
Two years later, in 1950, the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) was drafted by the newly created Council of Europe – an Organisation aiming at the unconditional protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms. Based on the principles of the UDHR, the ECHR established not only a unique system of rules but also an effective conventional instrument - the European Court of Human Rights that gives access to the hundreds of millions of individuals in Europe for the safeguarding of their human rights.
In my capacity as President of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, I pay a special tribute to Human Rights Day and to all those who throughout history have contributed to the achievements we value today. Let me particularly underline that through the Georgian Presidency’s priorities we attempt to address human rights issues by focusing on achieved progress and remaining challenges.