United Nations

A/RES/51/104


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

3 March 1997

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH



Fifty-first session
Agenda item 110 (b)


                  RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY

            [on the report of the Third Committee (A/51/619/Add.2)]


            51/104.     United Nations Decade for Human Rights
                        Education and public information
                        activities in the field of human
                        rights


      The General Assembly,

      Guided by the fundamental and universal principles enshrined in
the Charter of the United Nations and the Universal Declaration of
Human Rights, 1/ according to article 26 of which "education shall be
directed to the full development of the human personality and to the
strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms",
and the provisions of other international human rights instruments,
such as those of article 13 of the International Covenant on Economic,
Social and Cultural Rights 2/ and article 28 of the Convention on the
Rights of the Child, 3/ that reflect the aims of the aforementioned
article,

      Recalling the relevant resolutions adopted by the General
Assembly and the Commission on Human Rights concerning the World
Public Information Campaign on Human Rights, the United Nations Decade
for Human Rights Education, 1995-2004, the project of the United
Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization entitled
"Towards a culture of peace", the Vienna Declaration and Programme of
Action, adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights on
25 June 1993, 4/ and the fiftieth anniversary of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights,

      Believing that the World Public Information Campaign on Human
Rights is a valuable complement to the activities of the United
Nations aimed at the further promotion and protection of human rights,
and recalling the importance attached by the World Conference on Human
Rights to human rights education and information,

      Convinced that human rights education should involve more than
the provision of information and should constitute a comprehensive
lifelong process by which people at all levels of development and in
all societies learn respect for the dignity of others and the means
and methods of ensuring that respect,

      Recognizing that human rights education and information are
essential to the realization of human rights and fundamental freedoms
and that carefully designed programmes of teaching, learning, training
and sharing of experiences, materials and information can have a
catalytic effect on national, regional and international initiatives
to promote and protect human rights and prevent human rights
violations,

      Convinced that human rights education and information contribute
to a concept of development consistent with the dignity of women and
men of all ages that takes into account the diverse segments of
society such as children, indigenous people, minorities and disabled
persons,

      Taking into account the efforts to promote human rights education
made by educators and non-governmental organizations in all parts of
the world, as well as by intergovernmental organizations, including
the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization,
the International Labour Organization and the United Nations
Children's Fund,

      Convinced that each woman, man and child, to realize their full
human potential, must be made aware of all their human rights and
fundamental freedoms,

      Recognizing the invaluable and creative role that
non-governmental organizations and community-based organizations can
play in disseminating public information and engaging in human rights
education, especially at the grass-roots level and in remote and rural
communities,

      Aware of the potential supportive role of the private sector in
implementing at all levels of society the Plan of Action for the
United Nations Decade for Human Rights Education, 1995-2004 5/ and
the World Public Information Campaign, through creative initiatives
and financial support for governmental and non-governmental
activities,

      Convinced that the effectiveness of existing human rights
education and public information activities would be enhanced by
better coordination and cooperation at the national, regional and
international levels,

      Recalling that it is within the responsibility of the United
Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to coordinate relevant
United Nations education and public information programmes in the
field of human rights,

      1.    Takes note with appreciation of the report of the United
Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on the implementation of
the Plan of Action for the United Nations Decade for Human Rights
Education, 6/ and of the report of the Secretary-General on the
development of public information activities in the field of human
rights, including the World Public Information Campaign on Human
Rights; 7/

      2.    Welcomes the steps taken by Governments, intergovernmental
and non-governmental organizations to implement the Plan of Action, as
indicated in the report of the High Commissioner;

      3.    Urges all Governments to inform their communities about the
World Public Information Campaign on Human Rights and the Decade and
to contribute further to the implementation of the Plan of Action, in
particular by establishing, in accordance with national conditions,
broadly representative national committees for human rights education
and training centres for human rights education or, where such bodies
exist, to strengthen them to work towards the elaboration and
implementation of an action-oriented national plan for information and
education in human rights;

      4.    Also urges Governments to encourage, support and involve
national and local non-governmental organizations and community-based
organizations in the implementation of their national action plans;

      5.    Appeals to Governments, in accordance with their national
conditions, to accord priority to the dissemination in their relevant
national and local languages of the Universal Declaration of Human
Rights, 1/ the International Covenants on Human Rights 2/ and other human
rights instruments, human rights materials and training manuals, as
well as reports of States parties under the human rights treaties, and
to provide information and education in those languages on the
practical ways in which national and international institutions and
procedures may be utilized to ensure the effective implementation of
those instruments;

      6.    Welcomes the efforts made by the United Nations High
Commissioner for Human Rights, together with the Department of Public
Information of the Secretariat to increase cooperation with the media,
including by the provision of timely and relevant information on human
rights issues;

      7.    Urges the Department of Public Information to continue to
utilize United Nations information centres for the timely
dissemination, within their designated areas of activity, of basic
information, reference and audio-visual materials on human rights and
fundamental freedoms, including the reports of States parties under
human rights instruments and, to this end, to ensure that the
information centres are supplied with adequate quantities of those
materials;

      8.    Requests the High Commissioner/Centre for Human Rights of
the Secretariat to continue to coordinate the implementation of the
Plan of Action to ensure maximum effectiveness and efficiency in the
use, processing, management and distribution of information and
educational materials and to continue to coordinate and harmonize
human rights information strategies within the United Nations system;

      9.    Encourages the High Commissioner/Centre for Human Rights to
continue the development of training courses and materials, including
targeted training manuals for professional audiences, as well as the
dissemination of human rights information materials as a component of
technical assistance projects, supplemented by electronic means
wherever possible, taking particular account of the human rights needs
of women, children, remote or isolated communities and persons with
low levels of literacy;

      10.   Requests the human rights mechanisms to place emphasis on
the promotion and implementation of programmes of information and
education on human rights;

      11.   Requests the Secretary-General, in cooperation with the High
Commissioner/Centre for Human Rights, to consider appropriate ways and
means, including the possibility of establishing a voluntary fund, to
support human rights activities, including those undertaken by
non-governmental organizations;

      12.   Invites the specialized agencies and relevant United Nations
programmes to contribute, within their respective spheres of
competence, to the implementation of the Plan of Action and the World
Public Information Campaign on Human Rights;

      13.   Calls upon international, regional and national
non-governmental organizations and intergovernmental organizations, in
particular those concerned with women, labour, development, food,
housing, education, health care and the environment, as well as all
other social justice groups, human rights advocates, educators,
religious organizations and the media, to undertake specific
activities of formal, non-formal and informal education, including
cultural events, alone and in cooperation with the High
Commissioner/Centre for Human Rights, in implementing the Plan of
Action;

      14.   Stresses the need for close collaboration between the High
Commissioner/Centre for Human Rights and the Department of Public
Information in the implementation of the World Public Information
Campaign on Human Rights and the Plan of Action and the need to
harmonize their activities with those of other organizations such as
the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
in the project entitled "Towards a culture of peace" and the
International Committee of the Red Cross and relevant non-governmental
organizations with regard to the dissemination of information on
international humanitarian law;

      15.   Encourages the High Commissioner/Centre for Human Rights to
consider the promotion of educational and cultural activities
throughout the world in accordance with the Plan of Action and the
World Public Information Campaign on Human Rights when preparing for
the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights;

      16.   Requests the Secretary-General to bring the present
resolution to the attention of all members of the international
community and to intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations
concerned with human rights education and public information and to
submit to the General Assembly at its fifty-second session a
comprehensive report on the implementation of the present resolution
for consideration under the item entitled "Human rights questions".


                                                          82nd plenary meeting
                                                              12 December 1996


                                     Notes

1/    Resolution 217 A (III).

2/    See resolution 2200 A (XXI), annex.

3/    Resolution 44/25, annex.

4/    A/CONF.157/24 (Part I), chap. III.

5/    A/49/261/Add.1-E/1994/110/Add.1, annex.

6/    A/51/506, annex.

7/    A/51/558.

 

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