Strengthen Commitment to Values, Principles of Universal Human Rights Declaration, Secretary-General Urges Member States in Video Message for Anniversary Event

Following is the text of UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ video message to the High-level Event Commemorating the Seventy-Fifth Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, in Geneva today:

Seventy-five years ago, from the ashes of World War II, the world came together to adopt the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  Building on the United Nations Charter, the Universal Declaration presented a blueprint for human rights and fundamental freedoms — and a beacon of hope for humanity.

Since then, it has guided our efforts to promote peace, dignity and justice; laid the foundation for international human rights law; shaped regional treaties and charters and national human rights institutions; and inspired millions of people in their fight for freedom and equality.

Today, as war rages… as inequalities deepen… as women’s rights are eroding… as hate speech rises while civic space shrinks… the Universal Declaration of Human Rights must serve as our road map:  To uphold all human rights — political, civil, social, economic and cultural; to prevent conflict and stop impunity; to protect our planet; to respect international humanitarian law and ensure human dignity; to mend divisions and rebuild trust; to combat all forms of hatred or abuse — including antisemitism, anti-Muslim hatred and attacks on minority Christian communities; and to shape a sustainable future, in which digital technologies work for all of humanity.

As we celebrate this seventy-fifth anniversary, I call on every Member State to use this opportunity, and the Summit of the Future next year, to strengthen their commitment to the values and principles of the Universal Declaration.  Let us strive to uphold and promote human rights, freedom and equality — for all.  Together, we can realize the promise of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

For information media. Not an official record.