HUMAN RIGHTS Law

THE FOUNDATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS LAW

Humberto Calamari of Panama, Vice-Chairman of the UN General Assembly’s Third (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) Committee, presiding, in 1958, over a meeting on the draft International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights – which built on the achievement of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, using it as its foundation. (UN Photo)

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is generally agreed to be the foundation of international human rights law. Adopted in 1948, the UDHR has inspired a rich body of legally binding international human rights treaties. It continues to be an inspiration to us all whether in addressing injustices, in times of conflicts, in societies suffering repression, and in our efforts towards achieving universal enjoyment of human rights.

It represents the universal recognition that basic rights and fundamental freedoms are inherent to all human beings, inalienable and equally applicable to everyone, and that every one of us is born free and equal in dignity and rights. Whatever our nationality, place of residence, gender, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, language, or any other status, the international community on December 10 1948 made a commitment to upholding dignity and justice for all of us.

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Human Rights