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Logo Human Rights Day 2012: My voice counts

Human Rights Day 2012 - Feature stories

Many inspirational stories on inclusion and the right to participate in public life throughout this year have been featured on our website and can be found here.

 

Zeid calls for justice after more mass graves discovered in DRC
Zeid calls for justice after more mass graves discovered in DRC
The DRC Government must ensure there is a transparent and independent investigation into alleged human rights violations and abuses by all parties, Zeid says, after 17 further mass graves are found in the Kasais.
19 April 2017
Rape chants lay bare campaign of terror by Burundi militia
Rape chants lay bare campaign of terror by Burundi militia
A chilling video of Imbonerakure militia members in Burundi chanting a call to impregnate or kill opponents is an alarming indication of the militia's campaign of fear and terror, Zeid warns.
18 April 2017
Escalating erosion of the right to health is a critical human rights issue
Escalating erosion of the right to health is a critical human rights issue
Healthcare is not a privilege; it is a right, and it requires public policy. It is also a lever for everyone's economic, social and political advancement.
13 April 2017
Dangers of undermining international law and institutions
Dangers of undermining international law and institutions
We must stand up for the principles and institutions which protect us from chaos; or will our generation trigger a return to injustice, hate, war, imperialism and the oppressive exercise of naked power? - Zeid
5 April 2017
Preserve separation of powers, Zeid urges Venezuela
Preserve separation of powers, Zeid urges Venezuela
Zeid stresses the importance of the separation of powers for democracy and human rights, as he urges Venezuela’s Supreme Court to reconsider a ruling to strip the National Assembly of its legislative powers.
31 March 2017
Protection of civilians paramount as ISIL intensifies use of human shields
Protection of civilians paramount as ISIL intensifies use of human shields
High Commissioner Zeid urges Iraqi and Coalition forces to scrupulously respect international humanitarian law, to avoid loss of civilian lives, particularly given ISIL's cowardly strategy of using civilians as human shields.
28 March 2017
Two years of war, 13,000 civilian casualties in Yemen
Two years of war, 13,000 civilian casualties in Yemen
The violent deaths of refugees fleeing yet another war, of fishermen, of families in marketplaces, millions of people desperate for their basic rights to food, water, health and security - this is what the conflict in Yemen looks like two years after it began.
24 March 2017
National Human rights institutions link international law to local action
National Human rights institutions link international law to local action
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussien speaks with Beate Rudolf, chair of the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions during a recent meeting in Geneva. NHRIs provide an integral link between international human rights law and their countries.
17 March 2017
Undoing slavery
Undoing slavery's legacy of injustice and discrimination
The International Decade for People of African Descent, which will run until 2024, aims to honour and restore the dignity of people of African descent by raising awareness and sparking real change.
16 March 2017
International, impartial, independent: hope for accountability in Syria
International, impartial, independent: hope for accountability in Syria
Probably tens of thousands of people are currently detained in Syria. In a sense the entire country has become a torture chamber - a place of savage horror and absolute injustice.
14 March 2017
Serious rights violations in southeast Turkey
Serious rights violations in southeast Turkey
The displacement of thousands of people and the wholesale destruction of neighbourhoods in southeast Turkey during Government security operations are detailed in a UN report.
10 March 2017
'We need to protect each other and stand up for what we believe in'
"At times such as these, human rights are too important to be left to governments alone. We must also act, in our own lives, to uphold human rights," High Commissioner Zeid tells the FIDHR film festival in Geneva.
10 March 2017
Backlash against women
Backlash against women's rights hurts us all - Zeid
Zeid calls for us all to stand up for women's rights as the world marks International Women's Day on 8 March, warning that advances in women's equality should nowhere be taken for granted.
7 March 2017
New agreement on activities between Mexico and the UN Human Rights Office
New agreement on activities between Mexico and the UN Human Rights Office
The Office looks forward to assisting Mexico in meeting challenges to human rights, including impunity.
23 February 2017
Zeid calls for immediate halt to DRC killings
Zeid calls for immediate halt to DRC killings
Zeid calls on the DRC Government to act amid credible allegations of massive human rights violations in the DRC, including people being targeted by soldiers for their alleged affiliation with a local militia.
21 February 2017
Conflict and violence are the offspring of human rights violations
Conflict and violence are the offspring of human rights violations
At a major human rights conference in the Arab region, Deputy High Commissioner Kate Gilmore speaks to the power of human rights to prevent conflicts and rebuild broken societies.
21 February 2017
Film festival: the road to safety
Film festival: the road to safety
The 2017 edition of the Global Road Safety Film Festival marks 10 years of raising awareness of safety of the world’s road and preventing road traffic casualties and injuries.
20 February 2017
Ukraine conflict: End impunity for sexual violence
Ukraine conflict: End impunity for sexual violence
“What’s the point of saying what happened to me? No one will punish them.” UN report documents how survivors of sexual assault in the context of the armed conflict in Ukraine are often denied justice.
16 February 2017
Life in a political earthquake: The stabilising force of human rights
Life in a political earthquake: The stabilising force of human rights
Standing up for human rights is the best answer to spreading protectionism, nationalism and apparent attempts to undermine international law: Zeid
16 February 2017
"Stand up and join the struggle to uphold human rights"
"Stand up and join the struggle to uphold human rights"
At the ISFIT student festival in Norway, Deputy High Commissioner Kate Gilmore urged students from all over the world to uphold the vital principles of equality, justice, dignity and respect.
10 February 2017
Civilians in Yemen caught between warring parties
Civilians in Yemen caught between warring parties
Civilians were trapped and targeted during fighting in Al Mokha, and there are real fears that the situation will repeat itself in the port of Al Hudaidah, to the north of Al Mokha, where air strikes are already intensifying, Zeid warns.
10 February 2017
Record number of child casualties in Afghanistan
Record number of child casualties in Afghanistan
Civilian casualties in Afghanistan reached a record high in 2016. More children than ever have been killed, blinded, crippled while playing with unexploded ordnance negligently left behind by parties to the conflict.
6 February 2017
ISIL ‘deliberately targeting’ civilians in eastern Mosul
ISIL ‘deliberately targeting’ civilians in eastern Mosul
ISIL continues to target civilians in parts of Mosul recaptured by Iraqi forces with shelling and improvised explosive attacks, and reportedly shooting people attempting to flee the areas it still controls.
24 January 2017
Azimjan Askarov verdict in Kyrgyzstan ‘deeply troubling’
Azimjan Askarov verdict in Kyrgyzstan ‘deeply troubling’
The decision by a court in Kyrgyzstan to uphold a life sentence against political activist and journalist Azimjan Askarov highlights serious shortcomings in the country’s judicial system, Zeid says.
24 January 2017
Civilians in South Sudan live under constant risk of mass atrocities
Civilians in South Sudan live under constant risk of mass atrocities
A UN report details grave human rights violations, including killings and gang rapes, committed in Juba in July 2016. Six months later, there remains widespread impunity, as abuses continue unabated.
16 January 2017
Davos: Business leaders must stand up for human rights
Davos: Business leaders must stand up for human rights
High Commissioner Zeid calls on business leaders at Davos to use their considerable influence to stand up for human rights and to join in the fight to defend the global values that are currently under threat.
13 January 2017
"Stand up for someone
"Stand up for someone's rights today," Zeid urges
"In the street. In school. At work. In public transport. In the voting booth. At home. On social media. In sports. Wherever we are, all of us can make a real difference," said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on the occasion of Human Rights Day.
8 December 2016
UN rights chief: Scale of civilian suffering “numbing” in Iraq
UN rights chief: Scale of civilian suffering “numbing” in Iraq
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein has called for urgent action to help the victims and survivors of the recent large scale attacks in Mosul and other ISIL-occupied areas in Iraq.
11 November 2016
Celebrating the Human Rights Covenants at the UN General Assembly
Celebrating the Human Rights Covenants at the UN General Assembly
The Human Rights Covenants, now 50 years old, are our most precious legacy.
19 October 2016
High Commissioner Zeid Hails Peace Accord in Colombia
High Commissioner Zeid Hails Peace Accord in Colombia
The UN Human Rights Office pledges "full and enthusiastic" support for swift implementation  – building on years of strong, critical and respectful cooperation with authorities and civil society across the country.
29 September 2016
Zeid
Zeid's Global Human Rights Update
Addressing the 33rd session of the Human Rights Council, the High Commissioner focused on trends that increasingly undermine the work of the United Nations – including attempts to block the scrutiny of his Office.
13 September 2016
Zeid warns against populists and demagogues in Europe and U.S.
Zeid warns against populists and demagogues in Europe and U.S.
Zeid urges action to confront demagogues who blend fictional halcyon past with half truths and simplification, resulting in "the banalization of bigotry" and an atmosphere of hate that may slide into violence.
5 September 2016
Zeid warns against populists and demagogues in Europe and U.S.
Zeid warns against populists and demagogues in Europe and U.S.
Zeid urges action to confront demagogues who blend fictional halcyon past with half truths and simplification, resulting in "the banalization of bigotry" and an atmosphere of hate that may slide into violence.
5 September 2016
Zeid urges accountability for violations in Yemen
Zeid urges accountability for violations in Yemen
A report on the armed conflict in Yemen lays bare the dire situation in the country, calling the international community to action.
25 August 2016
Thirteen civilian casualties a day in Yemen conflict
Thirteen civilian casualties a day in Yemen conflict
A new UN Human Rights Office report describes Yemen as a country at risk of a systemic collapse. Because of the lingering conflict, at least three million people have had their livelihood destroyed and have been forced to flee their homes in search of safety.
25 August 2016
Tragedy of Afghan casualties laid bare in UN report
Tragedy of Afghan casualties laid bare in UN report
A record number of civilians were killed or maimed in Afghanistan in the first half of this year – a third of them children.
25 July 2016
Zeid
Zeid's visit to DRC
High Commissioner Zeid has just ended a four-day visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo
21 July 2016
At least 200,000 civilians trapped in three Syrian towns
At least 200,000 civilians trapped in three Syrian towns
High Commissioner Zeid rings the alarm about the increasingly desperate situation of at least 200,000 civilians trapped in three towns in Syria.
15 July 2016
Ukraine: UN report on killings highlights “rampant impunity”
Ukraine: UN report on killings highlights “rampant impunity”
A new UN report describes the widespread killings that have taken place in Ukraine since January 2014 and highlights the very limited accountability that has taken place.
14 July 2016
Hate is being mainstreamed - global update by the High Commissioner
Hate is being mainstreamed - global update by the High Commissioner
In a wide-ranging update to the Human Rights Council, the High Commissioner detailed concerns in more than 50 countries and situations, and outlined ways the Office can assist.
13 June 2016