Human Rights Day
has been observed every year on December
10 since 1950. It commemorates the day on which, in 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted
the Universal Declaration of Human
Rights. Over the years, a series of documents and mechanisms have been
adopted to ensure the primacy of human rights and to address human rights
violations around the world.
This year, Human Rights Day is devoted to the launch of a
year-long campaign called "Our Rights. Our Freedoms. Always" to
celebrate the 50th anniversary of the two International Covenants on Human
Rights. The campaign revolves around the theme of rights and freedoms, such as
freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear.
The two Covenants are legally binding on all States parties. There are 168
States parties to the International Covenant
on Civil and Political Rights, and 164 to the International Covenant on
Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. The General Assembly adopted the
covenants in 1966 and they entered into force in 1976.
To commemorate this date, the President of Mexico spoke at
the award ceremony for the National
Human Rights Prize. In his remarks, he said that “human rights are a matter
Click here to learn about the history of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights.