Declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the EU on Human Rights Day

10-12-2019
The EU stands up for human rights
The EU stands up for human rights
Copyright: European Commission

We celebrate this year the 10th anniversary of the Charter of the Fundamental Rights and the 30th anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Yet these rights continue to be challenged around the world. In particular, children and youth continue to be the main victims of human rights violations. They are forced to seek refuge, recruited as soldiers, forced into child labour or torn apart from their families against their will.

In many places in the world, citizens are mobilising in favour of human rights. Human rights defenders are taking to the streets to demand respect for their rights: civil, political, economic, social and cultural. Young people in particular have been more and more active in standing up for their rights and their future.

In this changing global landscape, the European Union remains the strongest supporter of the multilateral system. It is the pillar of the promotion and protection of human rights. The European Union will reinforce its long-standing commitment, with a focus on new issues such as artificial intelligence or climate change.

The EU reaffirms its strong commitment to the full enjoyment of human rights by all women and girls. [..] In particular, the European Union contributed to moving forward on Child Rights and Freedom of Religion or Belief, [..and] has continued to partner with civil society, human rights defenders, academia, private sector and many others to advance on the human rights agenda.

[..] The European Union calls on all partners to allow human rights defenders to work in a safe and enabling environment, free from obstruction and insecurity.

The European Union will continue protecting, promoting and fulfilling human rights together with all countries, organisations and individuals engaged in providing effective and innovative responses to existing and new challenges. We have achieved a lot but more needs to be done.

 

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Full declaration

Human Rights Day 2019: time for the youth to change the world