Take a closer look at some of the events and stories taking place across the world to celebrate the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.


In Banjul, human rights activists reaffirmed their engagement for the Declaration

20 October 2018

To celebrate the 70th Anniversary of the UDHR, different events took place in and around the NGO Forum and the 63rd Ordinary Session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights held in Banjul, the Gambia.

A side event which took place on 20 October benefitted from the presence of Mrs. Soyata Maiga, Chairperson of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and Mrs. Hannah Forster, Executive Director of the African Centre for Democracy and Human Rights Studies. Hundreds of human rights activists from African countries took an active part and expressed their views during the discussion, moderated by Mr. Mahamane Cisse-Gouro, Chief of the Africa Branch at the UN Human Rights Office. . The event started with a short presentation of the UDHR70 campaign, following which, participants expressed their views on the impact of the UDHR in the promotion and the protection of human rights in their respective countries and how, in their little corner they endeavour to do their part in the promotion of the rights enshrined in the UDHR.

Participants underlined that UDHR is still relevant today and that despite progress and undeniable achievements, much more remains to be done. In particular, they highlighted the need to continue raising awareness about the rights cherished in the 30 articles of the UDHR given that they are not known and understood by a large majority of African people. Note was also taken that more needs to done to improve their implementation, with a focus on social and economic rights and on protection of the most vulnerable.

At the end of the discussion, the 280 participants reaffirmed their commitment to the UDHR by signing the pledge and standing up for human rights.

On 25 October, the UN Human Rights Office and the Commission jointly held a panel discussion on the 70th anniversary of the UDHR. The panel was composed of the Chairperson of the Commission and other Commissioners, Malawi representing member states, a representative of NGOs, the Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and association. The discussion espoused the history, importance and relevance of the UDHR for the promotion, protection and respect for human rights.

  • I will respect your rights regardless of who you are. I will uphold your rights even when I disagree with you
  • When anyone’s human rights are denied, everyone's rights are undermined, so I will stand up
  • I will raise my voice. I will take action. I will use my rights to stand up for your rights.

people have stood up for human rights

We can all be Human Rights Champions

Tweet, Instagram or YouTube your action using the hashtag #Standup4humanrights.

Spread the word