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Following is UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ message for Human Rights Day, observed on 10 December:
Our world is at a crossroads. The COVID-19 pandemic, the climate crisis and the expansion of digital technology into all areas of our lives have created new threats to human rights.
Exclusion and discrimination are rampant. Public space is shrinking. Poverty and hunger are rising for the first time in decades. Millions of children are missing out on their right to education. Inequality is deepening. But, we can choose a different path.
Seventy-three years ago today, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The principles set out in this simple Declaration remain the key to realizing all human rights — civil, economic, cultural, social and political — for all people, everywhere.
Recovery from the pandemic must be an opportunity to expand human rights and freedoms, and to rebuild trust. Trust in the justice and impartiality of laws and institutions. Confidence that a life of dignity is within reach. Faith that people can get a fair hearing and resolve their grievances peacefully.
The United Nations stands for the rights of every member of our human family. Today and every day, we will continue to work for justice, equality, dignity and human rights for all. Happy Human Rights Day.
From UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization)
Human Rights Day is observed every year on 10 December – the day on which the United Nations General Assembly adopted, in 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights empowers us all. The principles enshrined in the Declaration are as relevant today as they were in 1948. We need to stand up for our own rights and those of others. We can take action in our own daily lives, to uphold the rights that protect us all and thereby promote the kinship of all human beings.
In December 1948, UNESCO was the first United Nations agency to place the Universal Declaration at the heart of all its action, to promote it across the world through education and the media.
Human rights gain new meaning when they become a reality in the daily life of every single person in the world. Bringing human rights home is at the core of UNESCO’s mission in all its fields of competence – education, science, culture and communication. In the context of the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), UNESCO brings to the fore the centrality of human rights protection in the history and the mandate of the Organization.