Opening Speech of UN Resident Coordinator/UNDP Resident Representative Ms. Pratibha Mehta

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Dear distinguished guests, representatives of media organizations,

Ladies and gentlemen.

It is a true pleasure for me to welcome you all in today's media launch on the occasion of UN campaign Your Rights Are Your Opportunities, dedicated to 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. As you know, starting from the end of the last year the UN and member states widely observe the 70th anniversary of Universal Declaration Human Rights, which set out, for the first-time, fundamental human rights to be universally protected in all countries.

Let me emphasize the revolutionary nature of this declaration back in 1948, when many today's countries were still colonies where local populations were deprived of rights, tortures were a widespread practice, and various forms of societal exclusions based on race, religion, gender etc. existed in even developed countries. They continue to exist today in many places of the world. The declaration for many years gave us a vision and strength to change the world in which all people will have opportunity for self-fulfillment and happiness.

Due to adoption of Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and strong commitments of member states to follow its principles, the right to human dignity has been protected and the foundations for universal norms and principles were established.

The Declaration establishes equality of all people irrespective of race, color, sex, language, religion, political opinion, national or social origin, property, birth and other status. It declares that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity, rights and confirms that the State has a core responsibility to promote standards of life that enable people to live a life of dignity.

I am pleased to have this media launch right after celebration of a Constitution Day in Tajikistan that also stipulates the basic principles of the declaration and provides plenty of opportunities for the people of Tajikistan to know and fulfil their rights and realize opportunities.

Human rights are one of the three key pillars of the United Nations (along with peace and development) and supporting states in advancing human rights protection is an important goal of UN in all countries we operate. Sustainable Development Goals 2030 adopted in 2015 are based on the human rights approach and leave no one behind principle to make sure that UN member states commitments to eradicate poverty, build peaceful societies, protect the planet for future generations, reduce inequalities and provide equal opportunities for all are fully implemented. More than 90 % of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) targets are linked to international human rights and labour standards.

The UN system in Tajikistan is fully committed to support the government in implementing its human rights commitments under UPR, CEDAW, CRC that reflected in the draft National Human Rights Strategy 2018-2030. In this context we welcome the signing of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities by the President of Tajikistan in 2018, and further actions towards its ratification.

I have the honor to announce a launch of UN media campaign Your Rights Are Your Opportunities dedicated to 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This 30-day campaign, is aimed to involve various stakeholders in Tajikistan to explore and understand Human Rights dimensions and wide range of opportunities provided by the Human Rights Declaration and the state for all groups of population, especially women, youth, children, people with disabilities, minorities and excluded people. This 30-day campaign will include various meaningful events, which will observe jointly with the Government of Tajikistan such as Universal Children's Day, International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and launch of 16 Days of activism against GBV campaign, World AIDS Day, International Day of Persons with disabilities, International Anti-Corruption Day and will be concluded by the Human Rights Day on December 10.

The campaign Your rights are your opportunities will help to raise the awareness and promote various rights such as rights for economic opportunities, right for education, right for protection, right for equal opportunities and many others and encourage all to use the opportunities to improve their lives and wellbeing.

Once again, many thanks for your participation and hope for your active involvement and contribution to highlight the planned events.

Source: United nations in Tajikistan