Today is World Human Rights Day and the United Nations wants to shine a light on the activism of young people on the frontlines of action against the climate emergency which poses a threat to human rights and life.
UN Secretary, Antonio Guterres in his address to mark the observance urged governments to invest in progress and hope by paying attention to youth and engaging with them.
The UN chief says he is inspired by the energy and passion that young people bring to the struggle for human rights saying that young people can lead movements that change hearts and minds and make history.
Guterres says “throughout history and across the world, young people have been at the forefront of standing up for what is right.”
He named the civil rights movement, the anti‑apartheid movement, the women’s rights movement and many anti‑colonial and liberation struggles.
Today, on Human Rights Day, he says the world reaffirms fundamental human rights and celebrates the wisdom and legacy of Eleanor Roosevelt and all those involved in drafting the universal declaration of human rights more than 70 years ago.
Guterres expresses support for those who are committed to protecting and promoting human rights; and says the world will highlight where governments and others are falling short.
The work of human rights defenders, young and old, is essential to all our efforts for peace and for inclusive and sustainable development, the un head says, young advocates must be protected and supported.