"As we mark the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, we should never forget the profound progress that has been made over the decades--and, indeed, that is happening as we speak. The good stories deserve to be shared--not only to celebrate the achievements of those who made it happen. But to serve as an example and inspiration for others around the world. Just as the denial of human rights is part of the problem, the active promotion of human rights is part of the solution. So, too, is spreading the stories and the lessons of doors opened, rights secured, and victories won."The Declaration was proclaimed on December 10, 1948 through United Nations General Assembly Resolution 217 A (III):
. . . as a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations, to the end that every individual and every organ of society, keeping this Declaration constantly in mind, shall strive by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights and freedoms and by progressive measures, national and international, to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance, both among the peoples of Member States themselves and among the peoples of territories under their jurisdiction.Although not itself a binding legal document, it has "inspired more than more than 60 human rights instruments which together constitute an international standard of human rights."
The Declaration has been translated into more than 500 languages and dialects, from Abkhaz to Zulu. The English version is available here, while other versions are available via an online database. A guide to UN Human Rights documentation as well as various related UN databases are also accessible on the UN Human Rights website. A showcase of UDHR-related materials from around the world is available here.