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International Human Rights Day – Youth Standing Up for Human Rights

Today, the world marks International Human Rights Day, which this year celebrates the efforts of young people to engage in the promotion and protection of human rights. Slovenia strives every day to promote respect for human rights, including in its foreign policy, and today, Foreign Minister Dr Cerar and other Slovenian representatives join in various international events dedicated to this goal.

Minister Cerar is attending the Advocating Human Rights in the 21st Century international conference in Berlin, and yesterday he participated in the EU Foreign Affairs Council meeting, where International Human Rights Day was one of the items on the agenda.

On 9 December, Slovenia hosted an event in Geneva celebrating the launch of Phase 4 of the World Programme for Human Rights Education (2020–2024) focusing on youth.  Together with other members of the Platform for Human Rights Education, Slovenia co-initiated the World Programme and resolutions on human rights education and training in the UN Human Rights Council. In its foreign policy, Slovenia devotes special attention to the rights of the child, as demonstrated by a wide range of activities. Slovenian representatives are currently attending a UNESCO symposium on human rights education in Paris.

In 2019, human rights were the focus of the Foreign Ministry’s activities. A month ago, the human rights situation in Slovenia was reviewed as part of the Universal Periodic Review, a unique mechanism of the UN Human Rights Council. In early September, the Bled Strategic Forum hosted the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. Slovenia continued the implementation of the National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights and the Action Plan for the Implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolutions on Women, Peace and Security in the 2018–2020 Period. Slovenia strove for the prevention and elimination of human rights violations around the world, and for the prosecution of offenders. Slovenia advocated for the eradication of all forms of discrimination and acted in support of gender equality, the empowerment of women, children and youth, the dignity and human rights of older persons, the protection of minority rights, the right to a healthy living environment, the abolition of the death penalty, and a free and responsible media. 

The topic of this year’s International Human Rights Day – Youth Standing Up for Human Rights – celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, bringing into focus the young and their role in the efforts to create a better world. The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights underscores that participation of young people is vital if we wish to achieve sustainable development for all. Young people play a crucial role in bringing about positive change and, by being aware of and willing to claim their rights, they can generate benefits globally. With this year’s campaign under the slogan ‘Never too young to change the world’, the Office wishes to shed light on the inspirational role of young people in mass movements for a better future.