Human Rights Day, 10 December

2013 Theme: 20 Years Working for Your Rights

"As we commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, let us intensify our efforts to fulfill our collective responsibility to promote and protect the rights and dignity of all people everywhere."

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

A portrait of an eldery woman, a child washing his face with water, a group of kids laughing and playing

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The UN General Assembly proclaimed 10 December as Human Rights Day in 1950, to bring to the attention ‘of the peoples of the world’ the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as the common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations.

In 2013, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights marks 20 years since its establishment.

The United Nations General Assembly created the mandate of High Commissioner for the promotion and protection of all human rights in December 1993. The General Assembly was acting on a recommendation from delegates to the World Conference on Human Rights held in Vienna earlier the same year.

The Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, adopted by the World Conference, marked the beginning of a renewed effort in the protection and promotion of human rights and is regarded as one of the most significant human rights documents of the past quarter century.

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