The President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, released the following statement:
«Human Rights Day, which falls on the anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the United Nations General Assembly - 10 December 1948 - offers us a valuable opportunity to take stock of the progress made in defending unalienable individual human rights. For almost seventy years, the International Community has achieved laudable results but it is nonetheless dismaying (and the humanitarian catastrophes that we witness every day are a sad reminder of this) that the progress made in assuring the complete and effective enforcement of the numerous International Conventions on human rights is still far from being entirely satisfactory.
The United Nations' 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development represents a strong impulse to build freer, fairer, and more inclusive societies, in which all individual rights are mirrored in collective rights, as they are equally deserving of protection and respect. The right to live and to food, health and education, the right to the freedom of expression and of the press, the right to a fair trial and to profess one's religion, are only a few of the many tesserae of an unfinished mosaic, the mosaic of human rights.
Discriminating and shutting one's eyes to the pain and injustices suffered by others means stunting the potential growth of every society, breaking the relationship of trust between citizens and institutions; it means sowing the seeds of widespread social discontent that only too often gives rise to dramas and tragedies that are unacceptable for the level of development we have reached.
The Human Rights Day we are celebrating today is a reminder that protecting human rights is not a mere theoretical exercise, it does not only concern others and Institutions. It is a commitment that engages the community at large, every day and in every situation and circumstance».
Rome, 10 December, 2016