INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS DAY
[10th December 2018]
Today is Human Rights Day, instituted on this day in 1950 to commemorate the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in 1948. This year's celebration represents a milestone as it marks the 70th anniversary of the UDHR.
Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70
The signing of this document is of particularly great significance in history especially in regard to human rights. It showcased humanity's resolve just a few years removed from the devastation and despair of a gruesome global war to work together to ensure lasting peace, with the horrors of war still fresh in their minds.
While the 70 years since its signing have unfortunately not seen the total eradication of conflict, the document has stood the test of time an attestation of the continuing relevance of the principles contained in the document. Encompassing the best aspects of humanity, the document establishes the dignity of every person and the inherent nature and universality of human rights which every person is entitled to regardless of their background.
This year’s theme speaks to us all, in encouraging us to defend the rights of every person. It also represents a call to continue the work that the UDHR began in 1948, in finding international consensus on peaceful coexistence by affirming the inviolability of human rights.
The UDHR continues to impact us today, and has gone on to inspire legislation across the world with its guiding principles being incorporated into the Constitution of Zimbabwe adopted in 2013.
Described by Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, as "a detailed map to guide the world's people out of conflict and suffering," the UDHR remains as pertinent today as it was in 1948 and #StandUp4HumanRights tells us that it is imperative for us to continue the fight for human rights started then. In the words of the UN Secretary-General António Guterres:
“The rights proclaimed in the Declaration apply to everyone – no matter our race, belief, location or other distinction of any kind. Human rights are universal and eternal.”
Today Veritas joins the world in celebrating International Human Rights Day.