75 Years Of Human Rights: What's To Celebrate?

(MENAFN- Swissinfo) 中文 (zh) 75年人权进程:有何值得庆祝?

  • Français (fr) 75 ans de droits humains: que reste-t-il à fêter?
  • عربي (ar) خمسة وسبعون عاماً على إعلان حقوق الإنسان: ما الذي يُحتفى به؟
  • 日本語 (ja) 「世界人権宣言」採択75周年、私たちは何を祝うべきか?
  • Italiano (it) 75 anni di diritti umani, cosa c'è da celebrare?
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    Is there anything to celebrate on this 75th anniversary? It's worth reminding ourselves what the declarationExternal link promises: the right to free speech, to education, to not be tortured, to asylum if we are being persecuted, and much more.

    According to the UN Human Rights Office, there are currently 55 conflicts raging around the world. In Ukraine, Sudan and Gaza, there is compelling evidence that war crimes are being committed.

    Almost every nation in the world – 192 countries– has signed the declaration. That means our governments are supposed to guarantee us those rights and protections. But do they? Short answer: no. Long answer: not all of them, not all of the time.

    Nice to have or obligatory?

    The United Nations has the job of upholding the Universal Declaration. That's tantamount to aspiring to achieve the impossible. Yet it undertakes that mission by reminding, even condemning, governments who are abusing the rights of their citizens.

    The buck stops with the UN Human Rights Commissioner, a post the UN didn't even have until the 1990s, when the cold war thawed, and there was, however briefly, a genuine optimism that multilateralism could work.

    Over the course of this anniversary year, it has been my privilege to interview the men and women who have led the UN's human rights work over the decades. You can hear all of those exclusive in-depth interviews on our Inside Geneva podcast .

    Now 91, José Ayala Lasso from Ecuador was the very first UN human rights commissioner. He told me that when UN member states were negotiating the terms of the job, some governments thought the principles contained in the declaration were nice goals to have, while others thought they should be obligatory, and argued for some form of mechanism to uphold or even enforce them.

    “I tried to support the second position,” he told Inside Geneva.


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