International Human Rights Day on 10 December marks the 56 th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which was adopted on 10 December 1948 . It is a public holiday in Cambodia .
This year at the global level, the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and UNESCO are dedicating Human Rights Day to human rights education. In the words of the Universal Declaration, every individual and every organ of society is to strive by teaching and education, to promote respect for human rights and to secure their effective recognition and observance. In her statement for Human Rights Day, the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Louise Arbour stressed:
"International Human Rights Day is always a bittersweet occasion. It is an opportunity to review the impressive progress made in the last 60 years in putting the protection of the individual at the heart of affairs of States. But it is also a reminder that there are many people all over the world who continue to be denied their human rights. Ultimately, it is a call to action in the face of the enormous effort needed to make human rights a reality for everyone. One strategy to achieve that reality is
human rights education".
On 10 December, Cambodian citizens, human rights and development organisations are organising a walk for human rights to commemorate Human Rights Day with support from UN agencies under the overall theme of human rights education. The event will officially start at 2.00 pm at Wat Botum with some presentations, including statements by the Cambodian Human Rights Action Committee and NGO Forum, and Dr. Chea Samnang, Goodwill Ambassador of UNFPA, and Ms. Chan Chann Leakhena, a well known Cambodian actress, and a reading in Khmer of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by children.
The walk will start at around 3.00 p.m. from Wat Botum passing by the Hong Kong centre and the National Assembly and ending at the Royal Palace . King Sihamoni has invited a group of non-governmental organisations, civil society representatives and UN representatives to enter the Palace at 4.00 pm for a one hour meeting on the occasion of Human Rights Day. In addition to human rights education, civil society organisations will raise three themes: land, freedom of expression /assembly/ association (participation) and violence against women and children. Victims of land disputes, domestic violence, and child abuse will provide brief testimonies of the problems they face.
This event is one of many that are taking place on Human Rights Day in different countries of the world to renew efforts to promote respect for human rights and to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance.
OPENING CELEBRATION OF THE UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS AT WAT BOTUM
2 PM to 3 PM
. Opening by the Cambodian Human Rights Action Committee
. One traditional dance by Street Children Assistance and Development Programme (SCADP)
. Statement by NGO Forum
. Dr. Chea Samnang (Goodwill Ambassador of UNFPA)
. Ms. Chan Chann Leakhena (well known film actress)
. One traditional dance by SCADP
. Reading of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by children from SCADP
. One traditional dance by SCADP
Traditional dance by Street Children Assistance and Development Programme (SCADP)
3 PM to 4 PM Walk for Human Rights
Agenda for the meeting with the king
. Statement by Cambodian Human Rights Action Committee
. Land dispute
. Participation and related freedoms
. Domestic violence
. Child abuse
. Statements by UN agencies
. Statement by King Sihamoni