|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
SECRETARY-GENERAL WELCOMES ENTRY INTO FORCE OF CONVENTION ON RIGHTS
OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES AND ITS OPTIONAL PROTOCOL
The following statement was issued today by the Spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:
The Secretary-General welcomes the twentieth State depositing a ratification or accession today, which triggers the entry into force of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and its Protocol, on 3 May 2008.
The Secretary-General congratulates the States that have already ratified or acceded to the Convention for enabling the entry into force only a year-and-a-half from its adoption by Member States on 13 December 2006.
It is estimated that there are at least 650 million persons with disabilities worldwide, of whom approximately 80 per cent live in less-developed countries. The Convention, together with its Optional Protocol, is deeply rooted in the firm commitment of the international community to rectifying the egregious neglect and dehumanizing practices that violate the human rights of persons with disabilities.
The Convention will be a powerful tool to eradicate the obstacles faced by persons with disabilities: discrimination, segregation from society, economic marginalization, and lack of opportunities for participation in social, political and economic decision-making processes. It is a historic moment in our quest for realization of the universal human rights for ALL persons, creating a fully inclusive society for all.
Therefore, all States are called upon to ratify or accede to this Convention without delay. They will have an opportunity to deposit instruments of ratification or accession to this Convention during this year’s annual treaty event at the beginning of the sixty-third General Assembly session.
* *** *