Human rights are fundamental rights and freedoms to which every human being is entitled. They focus on individual, political, civil, spiritual, social, economic and cultural aspects of our lives. When human rights are respected, they allow us to develop to our fullest potential and create the foundation for peace within and among nations.

Human rights are often expressed and guaranteed by law. They lay down rights of individuals and groups, as well as obligations of Governments to act in certain ways or to refrain from certain acts, in order to promote and protect the mentioned rights.

The catalogue of human rights nowadays is very vast, reaching from rights that affect every human being, to rights that put an extra focus on vulnerable groups - such as women, children, youth, refugees, persons with disabilities, indigenous peoples and the LGBT community.

Unfortunately, human rights violations occur on a daily basis around the world. This is why it’s essential that young people are well aware of and familiar with human rights. They give youth worldwide a concrete instrument to advocate for their rights on the national and international level, call attention to any kind of human rights violation and hold governments accountable.

Researching issues connected to human rights, you might want to check out these resources:

Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights – What are Human Rights

Amnesty International – Human Rights by Topic

Human Rights Watch – Human Rights by Regions

United Nations – The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights – Core International Human Rights Treaties

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