Everyone has the right to be heard and to shape the decisions that affect their community. This right is enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and fully integrated in international law, especially in article 25 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Over the past century, we have made undeniable progress along the path of inclusion.
At the end of 2011, at least eight million people were receiving life-saving treatment, new HIV infections rates had dropped sharply in many countries, and 81 countries had increased domestic spending for AIDS by more than fifty per cent over the preceding five years. The global AIDS response has propelled a broader mobilization on global health generally, including an expanded multi-sectoral response to non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and depression. With access to antiretroviral treatment, most people living with HIV can remain healthy and productive, with a near normal life expectancy – and with a far smaller toll on already overstretched health systems.
International Day for Tolerance 16 November 2012
Building tolerance and understanding is fundamental for the twenty–first century. In an increasingly globalized world – in which societies are growing more diverse – tolerance is central to living together. Yet tolerance is being tested. In the face of economic and social pressures, some seek to exploit fears and highlight differences to stoke hatred of minorities, immigrants and the disadvantaged. To counter the rise of ignorance,
International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict 06 November 2012 Secretary–General's Message for 2012
War and armed conflict shred the fabric of sustainable development. They expand poverty, stunt opportunity and undermine fundamental human rights. No conflict–affected country has yet achieved a single Millennium Development Goal. As we look beyond the 2015 MDG deadline, we must recognize peace and security as a critical “fourth dimension” of sustainable development.
Helen Clark: Message on the International Day of Democracy 15 September 2012 | UNDP
International Day of Democracy is the occasion to reaffirm our commitment to human dignity, equal rights and equal opportunities, freedom and solidarity. In celebrating democratic accomplishments around the world, we remember that the struggle to build more inclusive and fair societies, economies, and governance systems continues in many countries, and can also involve threats to life and personal security.
Background Press Release on 21st Session of Human Rights Council 10 September 2012
The Human Rights Council will hold its twenty–first regular session from 10 to 28 September 2012 at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, during which it will hear presentations from 19 independent human rights experts and bodies and hold panels and discussions on gender integration, economic, social and cultural rights and the empowerment of women; cooperation with United Nations mechanisms and issues of intimidation or reprisals; and access of indigenous peoples to justice. The 47–member body will also hear from the Commission of Inquiry on Syria that will present its latest report.
UNDP Launches Collection of Innovative Development Stories in Europe and Central Asia 06 September 2012 | UNDP
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched today a new publication at its Executive Board meeting showcasing transformative development achievements in Eastern European and Central Asian countries. Much of these successes are based on innovative new social policies addressing the needs of that region’s chronically poor and marginalized, including the Roma, youth, the long-term unemployed and people with disabilities.
Youth unemployment expected to worsen with spread of euro crisis – UN labour agency 05 September 2012
Jobless rates among young people will get even worse globally as the spill–over of the euro crisis spreads from advanced to emerging economies, according to a United Nations paper issued today. “Ironically, only in developed economies are youth unemployment rates expected to fall in the coming years, but this follows the largest increase in youth unemployment among all regions since the start of the crisis,” said Ekkehard Ernst, the lead author of the UN International Labour Organization (ILO)’s paper, entitled Global Employment Outlook: Bleak Labour Market Prospects for Youth.
International Day against Nuclear Tests 27 August 2012
This year marks the 15th anniversary of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear–Test–Ban Treaty Organization. Since its founding, the CTBTO PrepCom has built the world’s largest multilateral verification regime, overcoming numerous political and practical challenges in the process. Today, the Comprehensive Nuclear–Test–Ban Treaty enjoys nearly worldwide support for its goal of a verifiable, permanent, global ban on all types of nuclear explosive tests.
World Humanitarian Day 14 August 2012
This year’s World Humanitarian Day presents an historic opportunity to bring together one billion people from around the world to advance a powerful and proactive idea: People Helping People.That is the best way to honour the many fallen aid workers we mourn today, and to celebrate the efforts of others who carry on their noble mission by rushing assistance to those who are suffering.
International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples 08 August 2012
In the five years since the adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, communities and individuals have been taking advantage of the reach of traditional and new media to tell their story and make their voices heard. The focus of this year’s International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples is "Indigenous Media, Empowering Indigenous Voices".
Secretary-General's Message for Nelson Mandela International Day 17 July 2012
Today, it gives me immense pleasure to say Happy Birthday Nelson Mandela. Nelson Mandela has been a lawyer and a freedom fighter... A political prisoner, peacemaker and president...
A healer of nations…and a mentor to generations of leaders and people from all walks of life throughout the world.
Nelson Mandela gave 67 years of his life to bring change to the people of South Africa.
Belarus Making Important Progress on Path to Nuclear Power 04 July 2012
Belarus has made important progress in its development of nuclear infrastructure for a nuclear power programme, an IAEA review by a team of international experts has concluded. The Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review (INIR) mission said that Belarus is on its way to being well–prepared with its infrastructure to support the construction of a nuclear power plant.
The Secretary-general Message on World refugee day 20 June 2012
More than 42 million people around the world have been forcibly displaced from their homes and communities. More than a million fled their countries in the last eighteen months alone due to a wave of conflicts, in Cote d’Ivoire, Libya, Mali, Somalia, Sudan and Syria. These numbers represent far more than statistics; they are individuals and families whose lives have been upended, whose communities have been destroyed, and whose future remains uncertain.
World Day Against Child Labour 2012 Stepping up action against child labour 11 June 2012
GENEVA, (ILO News) – A large gap remains between the ratification of Conventions on child labour and the actions countries take to deal with the problem, the International Labour Organization (ILO) said in a report marking the tenth anniversary of the annual World Day Against Child Labour.
Eurozone: “Extreme policies could produce extreme reactions”, ILO head warns 31 May 2012
GENEVA , 30 May (ILO NEWS)–Extreme policies to tackle the crisis in the Eurozone could produce extreme reactions, the Director–General of the International Labour Organization (ILO), Juan Somavia, told the nearly 5,000 delegates to the 101st International Labour Conference that opened in Geneva this morning.
Joint Message by the UN Secretary-General and the UNESCO Director-General for the 2012 Observance 02 May 2012
Freedom of expression is one of our most precious rights. It underpins every other freedom and provides a foundation for human dignity. Free, pluralistic and independent media is essential for its exercise. This is the message of World Press Freedom Day. Media freedom entails the freedom to hold opinions and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers, as stated in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This freedom is essential for healthy and vibrant societies.
ITU seeks next generation of social entrepreneurs 01 May 2012
Geneva, 1 May 2012 – ITU has launched the second edition of its Young Innovators Competition, giving young, talented social entrepreneurs the opportunity to attend its key global networking and knowledge sharing event, ITU Telecom World 2012, and the chance to win funding, mentorship and ongoing support.
New restrictions on NGOs are undermining human rights: Pillay 26 April 2012
GENEVA (25 April 2012) – UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay on Wednesday expressed deep concern about current or recent moves in a number of countries to curtail the freedom of non–governmental organizations (NGOs) and other civil society actors to operate independently and effectively.
International Day for Mine Awareness 03 April 2012
United Nations mine action programmes make an invaluable contribution to post-conflict recovery, humanitarian relief efforts, peace operations and development initiatives. They prevent landmines and other explosive ordnance from causing further indiscriminate harm long after conflicts have ended, and help to transform danger zones into productive land. Mine action sets communities on course toward lasting stability.
World Water Day 22 March 2012
Over the coming decades, feeding a growing global population and ensuring food and nutrition security for all will depend on increasing food production. This, in turn, means ensuring the sustainable use of our most critical finite resource – water. The theme of this year’s World Water Day is water and food security. Agriculture is by far the main user of freshwater. Unless we increase our capacity to use water wisely in agriculture, we will fail to end hunger and we will open the door to a range of other ills, including drought, famine and political instability.
UN human rights panel deplores Belarus execution 20 March 2012
The United Nations Human Rights Committee today voiced grave concern over the execution in Belarus of a person whose case was under its consideration after he was found guilty of last year’s bombing of a subway in the capital, Minsk. Vladislav Kovalev was executed “in recent days” along with another person following their conviction, the Committee, the body of independent experts that monitors implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights by State parties, said in a statement.
Global Forum in Istanbul to focus on action agenda for UN “Rio + 20” Sustainable Development summit 15 March 2012 | UNDP
Istanbul— Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan of Turkey and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Associate Administrator Rebeca Grynspan will open discussions on March 22 in a high–level forum here for development experts, government ministers from both North and South, business executives, and top UN officials to examine the global policy changes required to ensure a sustainable future for people today and for generations to come.