Celebrating Human Rights Day and 70 Years of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

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December 10 is International Human Rights Day.
December 10 is International Human Rights Day. This year the Universal Declaration of Human Rights turns 70.

Celebrating Human Rights Day and 70 Years of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Human Rights Day is observed every year on 10 December – the day the United Nations General Assembly adopted, in 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

In a statement, Secretary Pompeo underscored the importance of human rights in the United States' foreign policy, adding "U.S. foreign policy is rooted in the understanding that governments that respect individual rights and fundamental freedoms remain the best vehicles for prosperity, stability, and peace. On this International Human Rights Day, the United States underscores its commitment to promoting human freedom at home and around the world."

On Twitter, Secretary Pompeo took a moment to remember the innocent Americans held hostage by Iran and thier families.

This year, Human Rights Day marks the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The 30 articles of the Declaration set out a foundation for individual rights that have been incorporated into treaties, regional bodies, and national laws all around the world.

In his statement, the Secretary acknolwdged this milestone saying, "The Declaration’s fundamental principles remain as relevant today as they were seventy years ago. Still, governments impede the freedoms of religion or belief and expression. Citizens’ rights to participate in free, fair, and genuine elections remain precarious. Authorities continue to subject prisoners to torture and inhumane treatment. Global recognition of the inalienable rights belonging to all individuals must be continually encouraged and reaffirmed."

In recognition of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights turning 70, the State Department's Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor asked colleagues to reflect on which articles in the declaraton were most important to them. Here are some highlights: 

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