10 December 2010 -- On this day in 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which has become a universal standard for defending and promoting human rights. Every year on 10 December, Human Rights Day marks the adoption of the Universal Declaration. It is celebrated around the globe that "All human beings are born with equal and inalienable rights and fundamental freedoms".
This year's commemoration highlights and promotes the achievements of human rights defenders who fight to end discrimination. Human rights defenders protest abuses of human rights, advocate for justice and seek to protect the victims of human rights violations. They demand accountability for perpetrators and transparency in government action. In so doing, they are often putting at risk their own safety, and that of their families.
Some human rights defenders are famous, but most are not. They are active in every part of the world, working alone and in groups, in local communities, in national politics and internationally.
Human Rights Day 2010 emphasizes the primary responsibility governments have in enabling and protecting human rights defenders. The Day's theme “Speak up, Stop Discrimination” is also intended to inspire a new generation of defenders to speak up and take action to end discrimination in all of its forms whenever and wherever it is manifested.
Source: Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)