Universal Declaration of Human Rights

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Universal Declaration of Human Rights


a declaration adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on Dec. 10, 1948. The declaration consists of a preamble and 30 articles. It is based on the principles of the United Nations Charter concerning the need to develop international cooperation and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights proclaims fundamental personal rights: the equality of all persons without distinction of any kind; the right to life, liberty, and security of person, without attacks upon any person’s honor and reputation; and the right to a home and to a fair hearing by an impartial tribune in the determination of one’s rights. The declaration also proclaims civil and political rights and freedoms, such as the right of asylum and the right to freedom of conscience and religion, and social and economic rights, such as the right to work and to free choice of employment, to just and safe conditions of work, to protection against unemployment, and to equal pay for equal work. Everyone is entitled to all these rights and freedoms without distinction of any kind such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other views, national or social origin, property, birth, or other status. The Soviet Union regards the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as a progressive instrument but abstained from voting on it, since it made no provision for the adoption of definite measures to implement the proclaimed rights and freedoms.

Following the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a number of international conventions were drawn up, such as the Convention on Political Rights of Women (1952), the Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery (1956), and the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples (1960).


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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