Today marks the 72nd anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. An ambitious document for its time, the Universal Declaration is the foundation on which our modern system of international human rights is built.
The COVID-19 pandemic has presented challenges to the protection of human rights in 2020, with a disproportionate impact on some segments of the population, including women and girls, older people, and people with disabilities.
As we have done throughout our three-year term on the Human Rights Council, Australia will continue to defend longstanding human rights principles and norms, protect hard won gains and raise serious concerns about human rights situations around the world.
We will continue to protect hard-won gains in gender equality, advocate for the rights of Indigenous peoples and people with disabilities, and promote equal rights for LGBTI persons.
Australia will continue to be a strong voice in defence of freedom of expression, freedom of religion or belief, and the critical role of national human rights institutions and civil society. We will continue to make clear our opposition to the death penalty, in all circumstances and for all people.
On International Human Rights Day, Australia reaffirms our commitment to promote human rights for all people.