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UN Human Rights Office advances human rights education in Mozambique

“Human rights education is much more than a lesson in schools or a theme for a day; it is designed to provide new generations with the knowledge of their inalienable rights, and the means to exercise and to defend them,” said Katherine Liao, UN Human Rights Deputy Regional Representative for Southern Africa, in her opening statement during the launch of the new Human Rights Resource Centre in Maputo, Mozambique.

The Human Rights Resource Centre has been established by the UN Human Rights Office and the Eduardo Mondlane University in Maputo. The Office has donated a variety of publications on a range of human rights issues to the new Centre, which is based in the University’s Centre for Human Rights of the Faculty of Law. The publications include fact sheets, reference materials, human rights education materials, and special issues.

“We hope that this Human Rights Resource Centre will contribute to the promotion of human rights in Southern Africa and in Mozambique in particular by providing easy and free access to human rights related resource materials for citizens, human rights defenders, and researchers,” Liao said. Liao expressed her hope that the publications disseminated from the Office’s headquarters in Geneva will continue in order to keep the resource centre updated and relevant.

Jennifer Topping, the UN Resident Coordinator in Mozambique, also felt that the Centre will serve as a vital tool in sharing existing knowledge on human rights to individuals and communities. The collection is accessible to anyone who can visit the resource centre.

Dr. Luís Bitone Nahe, Coordinator of the Human Rights Resource Centre and Dr. Armando César Dimande, Director of the Law Faculty and a representative of the Eduardo Mondlane University expressed their enthusiasm for the new partnership between the UN Human Rights Office and the University.

The Regional Office for Southern Africa (ROSA) of the UN Human Rights Office has already established, or is in the process of establishing, similar resource centres in South Africa, Malawi and Mauritius. There is also a goal to open more resource centres in all 14 countries that ROSA covers—Angola, Botswana, Comoros, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

10 January 2014

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