August 25th, 2011 by Hasham
60th Anniversary Universal Declaration Of Human Rights
On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Law Faculty and the UN Country Team Thematic Group on Human Rights in Montenegro organized a two-day conference for the representatives of the main pillars of society – academia, government and civil sector, at the Law Faculty in Podgorica on December 9 and 10. The focus of the Conference was on four thematic areas selected in coordination and consultation with NGO and government entities: the right to gender equality, minority rights, the right to a fair trial and due process of law and the rights of people with disabilities.
At the opening of the Conference on Human Rights, Mr. Ranko Mujovic, Dean of the Law Faculty said that the Declaration represents perhaps the most important instrument of human rights protection in the 20th century. “There are at least four reasons for celebrating the anniversary of the Declaration, namely transformation of human rights from idea to ideology, as well as their definition, universalisation and internationalisation,” said Mr. Mujovic. He also reminded that the Declaration has directly and indirectly served as a model for many constitutions, laws and regulations within fundamental human rights protection policies.
Mr. Šefko Crnovršanin, Montenegrin Protector of Human Rights and Freedoms (Ombudsman) said that the Declaration is the most humane document in human history because it guarantees the rights to every individual, without distinction of any kind, such as gender, race, colour, origin, religion or any other beliefs. “Therefore, the story on human rights never ends. This is the reason why activities in the domain of human rights should never stop, not even when a society is satisfied with achievements in this field,“ said Mr. Crnovršanin. He also pointed out that in the places where courts are overloaded and inefficient, basic human rights will be violated.
Mr. Alexander Avanesov, UN Resident Coordinator to Montenegro said that Montenegro had proclaimed its commitment and dedication to the principles of human rights which was reconfirmed at the highest level during the UN General Assembly session by the President of Montenegro. Mr. Avanesov explained that, based on a number of national and international analyses Montenegro had taken many positive steps in recent years to upgrade human rights in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights , the European Convention on Human Rights and other international human rights documents. “The main task now is to ensure effective implementation of these commitments and ensure further progress in areas such as: reform of judiciary, reduction of poverty, granting a legal status and opportunities of local integration for refugees, social inclusion of Roma population, protection of children rights and enhanced education offered in rural areas, gender equality, the rights of persons with disabilities and the stigma surrounding marginalised groups, and many other issues which we are going to discuss during the forthcoming Conference,” Mr. Avanesov concluded.
Representatives of the Government, NGOs and Faculty of Law participated in the discussion at four Thematic Panels on the following themes: Gender Equality, Minority Rights, Right to a Fair Trial and Due Process of Law and Rights of People with Disabilities.
The Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
To commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Information Resource Center hosted a presentation and discussion on human rights for library members. Members were given several articles from America.gov/fr in advance to read in order to prepare for the discussion. IRC Assistant Moussa Sy shared a PowerPoint presentation on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with over 25 library members. Members then discussed the role of the Universal Declaration in establishing international norms for human rights and the impact this document has had on the human rights situation around the world today. Several members pointed out that even 60 years after the Universal Declaration was adopted by the U.N. General Assembly, many people are not aware of their rights, especially those who have not had the opportunity to go to school. Other participants wondered about the correlation between democracy and human rights and the impact of poverty on respect for human rights. The conversation was dynamic and members shared informed opinions about this very important topic. Upon conclusion of the debate, one participant asked the others to take advantage of the resources offered by the IRC to learn about and to educate others about human rights. The IRC assistant shared copies of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with all participants and asked them to take the time to read it and share the information with their friends and neighbors.
Not only does December 10, 2008 mark the annual international Human Rights Day, it signifies an important day in history of human rights. The Universal Declaration on Human Rights, one of the most important documents on protecting human rights for the citizens of the world, was signed on December 10, 1948 in France by all member states of the United Nations, honoring our thirty most basic yet fundamental rights.
In celebration of the 60th anniversary of the UDHR and to promote its values among Hong Kong students, Amnesty International Hong Kong, with the support of the Consulate general of France, organized a poster design contest titled: Born Free and Equal.
It was a fantastic contest with close to 300 entries received from secondary schools all over Hong Kong. Many entries were of excellent quality despite the young age of the participants. At the prize presentation on 15th January 2009, Ms. Paule Ignatio, Consul (Political & Public Relations) of France presented the awards and a round-trip flight ticket to Paris offered by the consulate to the winner.
Mr Bernard Kouchner, the French Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, and Ms Rama Yade, Minister of State with responsability for Foreign Affairs and Human Rights, have hold a press conference on the 4th of June, to launch the celebrations of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The press conference was hold at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Mr Stéphane Hessel, French Ambassador and co-writer of the Declaration adopted on the 10th of December 1948, attended it.
Mr Kouchner and Ms Yade have presentedthe celebration label, and the schedule of the events which will mobilize both the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs and its network abroad, as well as members of civil society.
The celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights will be the occasion to reassert the universality and indivisibility of Human Rights. Human Rights are a day-to-day fight requiring the mobilisation of every one.
Rama Yade “It is a question which is often given a rough ride in some countries, but this should not prevent us from defending a universal conception of this notion, as Bernard Kouchner sait it. This universal perception is also given a rough ride by some States which defend a more cultural, culturalist and regional approach, whereas we think that, for example, on the question of women rights, a Bangladeshi as Taslim Nasree deserves the same rights as a Parisian woman.”
On the occasion of the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Mr. François Zimeray, Ambassador of France for Human Rights, questionned the universality of Human Rights during a Talk & Dinner held at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club, on Monday, November 17, 2008. Mr. François Zimeray illustrated his speech with a special photo exhibition by popular photographers, which is currently presented on the walls of the French Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs. This exhibition illustrates each article of the 1948 Declaration with photos from all over the world and aims to create a dialogue between images and text, while confronting principles to reality.
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