Today we celebrate World Human Rights day, which commemorates the day the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) on December 10, 1948.
The UDHR is one of the UN’s major achievements as well as being the first enunciation of human rights across the world. As it may come as no surprise it is the most translated document the world-over since it is available in 500 languages. Although it is not part of binding international law, its acceptance by all countries around the world gives great moral weight to the fundamental principle that all human beings, whatever nationality, place of residence, sex, national or ethnic origin, color, religion, language or any other status, are to be treated equally and with respect.
The UN has since adopted many legally binding international human rights treaties and agreements that are used as a framework for discussing and applying human rights. The framework also establishes legal and other mechanisms to hold governments accountable in the event they violate human rights.
Just over 70 years ago world leaders signed this agreement to ensure that Human Rights are everyone’s rights. Today we celebrate the achievements and reaffirm Article 1 of the Declaration “All Human Beings are Equal in Dignity and Rights”.