Kyiv, 10 December 2016
Today, the UN has launched the awareness raising campaign in Ukraine to mark the International Human Rights Day. The campaign features Ukrainian celebrities and opinion leaders appealing to learn about fundamental rights and stand up for the rights of others.
The two and a half year conflict in Ukraine has caused dramatic human, social and economic losses, led to drastic violations of legal norms and resulted in human rights violations. This year the office of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights together with the UN Refugee Agency and International Organization for Migration launched an information campaign to educate Ukrainians about human rights and their protection.
"Stand up for Someone's Rights Today, the motto of this year's Human Rights Day, is acutely relevant in Ukraine. We are approached by individuals on a daily basis, who worry about violations of the rights of their loved ones, friends, colleagues, neighbors. We document these cases for the purpose of accountability. Equally important is the role of civil society, where individuals work together for change - to support improving the human rights situation together", said Fiona Frazer, Head of UN Human Rights Mission in Ukraine.
The campaign in Ukraine aims to increase awareness among the wide audience about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Human Rights Day is observed every year on 10 December. It commemorates the day on which, in 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This is a cornerstone international document that lays out human rights and fundamental freedoms as well as proclaims that all persons have equal rights. The Declaration has been translated into 370 languages setting a world record of being the most translated text.
“As a consequence of the economic hardship, more and more Ukrainians’ human rights are being violated while seeking employment abroad, as we can see through the sharply increasing number of identified victims of trafficking. Those Ukrainians internally displaced are equally vulnerable to human rights violations. Therefore upholding the human rights of migrants remains today as vital as ever, globally as well as in Ukraine. At the same time, it is crucial that the rights of migrants who are coming to and living in Ukraine are respected in the same way as the rights of Ukrainian migrants abroad ought to be”, says Manfred Profazi, Chief of Mission of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Ukraine. “That’s why IOM is extremely pleased to be able to support this important campaign and we are grateful to the many Ukrainian celebrities who have joined it”, highlights Mr. Profazi.
Photo: Ukrainian Crisis Media Center
In this year’s campaign videos Ukrainian celebrities and human rights activists read out selected articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which became especially important for Ukrainian society.
“The conflict in Ukraine has displaced more than two million people within Ukraine and abroad. Many of them cannot access their social and political rights. The situation with refugees and asylum seekers in Ukraine is even more difficult. We support this campaign to remind to people that it is important to know your rights, to stand for them as well as stand for someone’s rights. We hope that by joining our efforts with Ukrainian celebrities and civic activists, we can make our voice and our campaign stronger”, highlights Pablo Mateu, UNHCR Representative in Ukraine
The campaign will feature 2016 Eurovision winner Jamala, Ukrainian singers Sviatoslav Vakarchuk and Gaitana, TV host Alla Mazur along with many other prominent opinion leaders. The videos will be available by national TV channels, as well as UN agencies and partners’ websites and social media platforms.