|Malaysian lawyers and activists march in Kuala Lumpur [REUTERS]|
On December 10, 1948 the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Its 30 articles have been enforced in international treaties, local human rights tools, national bills and constitutions.
The following timeline is a review of the most significant conventions and declarations that marked the UN’s role in the affirmation of human rights.
June 26, 1945: UN Charter is signed in San Francisco.
December 9, 1948: Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.
December 10, 1948: Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
November 4, 1950: European Convention of Human Rights (Council of Europe).
January 12, 1951: Convention on the prevention of the crime of genocide.
July 28, 1951: Convention relating to status of refugees.
December 20, 1952: Convention on the political rights of women.
October 23, 1953: Protocol amending the convention to suppress the slave trade and slavery originally signed in Geneva, Switzerland on September 25, 1926, under the auspices of the League of Nations.
September 28, 1954: Convention relating to stateless persons.
September 7, 1956: Convention on the abolition of slavery, the slave trade, and institutions and practices of slavery.
June 25, 1957: Convention on the abolition of forced labour.
November 20, 1959: Declaration of the right of the child.
December 14, 1960: Declaration on the granting of independence to colonial countries and people.
|Human rights protest against the US-run Guantanamo Bay prison [AFP]|
November 20, 1963: Declaration on the elimination of all forms of racial discrimination.
December 21, 1965: International convention on the elimination of all forms of racial discrimination. A committee on the elimination of all forms of racial discrimination established.
December 16, 1966: International covenant on civil and political rights – Human Rights committee established.
November 7, 1967: Declaration of the elimination of discrimination against women. Proclamation of Tehran – International conference on human rights.
November 26, 1968: Convention on the non-applicability of statutory limitations to war crimes against humanity.
December 20, 1971: Declaration of the rights of the elderly.
December 20, 1971: Declaration of the rights of mentally retarded persons.
November 30, 1973: International convention on the suppression and punishment of the crime of apartheid.
December 9, 1975: Declaration on the rights of disabled persons. Declaration on the protection of all persons from being subjected to torture and other cruel inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
December 9, 1978: Convention concerning migrations in abusive conditions and the promotion of equality of opportunity and treatment of migrant workers.
December 18, 1979: Convention on the elimination of all kinds of discrimination against women. Committee on the elimination of all kinds of discrimination against women established.
June 27, 1981: African charter on hand people’s rights (African Charter).
November 25, 1981: Declaration on the elimination of all intolerance and discrimination based on religion or belief.
December 10, 1984: Convention against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
May 28, 1985: Committee on economic, social and cultural rights established to monitor international convention on economic, social and cultural rights.
December 4, 1986: Declaration on the right to development.
November 20, 1989: Convention on the right of the child. Committee on the right of the child established.
December 15, 1989: Second optional protocol to the international covenant on civil and political rights – aimed at the abolition of death penalty.
August 5, 1990: Cairo declaration on human rights in Islam.
December 14, 1990: Basic principles for the treatment of prisoners.
December 18, 1990: International convention on the protection of the rights of all migrant workers and members of their families.
December 18, 1992: Declaration on the protection of all persons from enforced disappearance. Declaration on the rights of persons belonging to national or ethnic or religious or linguistic minorities.
June 14, 1993: World conference on human rights opens in Vienna.
December 20, 1993: Declaration on the elimination of violence against women.
December 21, 1993: International decade of the world’s indegenous peoples proclaimed.
September 15, 1994: Declaration of the Arab charter on human rights.
December 23, 1994: International decade for human rights education proclaimed: 1995 – 2004
September 15, 1995: World conference on womens rights at Beijing.
|Zimbabwean immigrants illegally crossing into South Africa [GALLO/GETTY]|
April 3, 1998: Declaration on the right and responsibility of individuals, groups and organs of society to promote and protect universally recognised human rights and fundamental freedoms.
December 7, 2000: Charter of fundamental rights of the European Union.
September 4-8, 2001: World conference against racism, xenophobia and all forms of discrimination in Durban, South Africa.
June 29, 2006: United Nations declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples.
May 3, 2008: Convention on the rights of people with disabilities came into force.