The International Observatory of Human Rights partners with Liberal International in Denmark to Commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the UN Declaration of Human Rights.
IOHR was invited to Copenhagen to partner with the Liberal International Committee in a series of events with one of its leading Danish members, social liberal party Radikale Venstre to drive discourse on human rights on the 70th Anniversary of the UN declaration of Human Rights.
On the 6 December Liberal committee members were joined by special guests and parliamentarians at an evening reception held in the Christiansborg Palace, home to the Danish Parliament, on the Castle Islet of “Slotsholmen” on Copenhagen harbour in the heart of the city. This was followed by a private breakfast briefing on 7th December to enable delegates to freely exchange views on the threats to human rights across Europe.
Local students were invited to participate in an afternoon workshop session to explore the current human rights issues in Denmark, how human rights fits within the political system and what is Denmark’s place in the international human rights arena. The students then joined the main conference entitled “Exchange of Views “70 Years on: What next for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights?”
IOHR’s Trish lynch was the moderator of the event with special guest speakers Morten Østergaard, current leader of the Danish Social Liberal Party Radikale and Zhanna Nemtsova who founded the Boris Nemtsov Foundation after her father, renowned Russian opposition figure to Vladimir Putin was murdered three years ago. The investigation of his death is still unsolved–“Quite deliberately” believes Nemtsova.
Opening the conference, Markus Loening said that the “UN Declaration has ensured that each and every one of us has unalienable rights and at its very core has the dignity of each person. We have obligations as countries that are free and that are democracies to support human rights defenders and journalists and others in countries that are in a less privileged position. It is important that we always remember where we have come from and where we want to go and that we never lose hope that our engagement will make a difference.”
Morten Østergaard spoke passionately on the declaration saying “on the 70th anniversary we can sit together to promote social progress and better standards of life and greater freedoms to reaffirm values once again.”
Østergaard also gave a pledge to Zhanna Nemtsova to work with Copenhagen City Council to seek permission to name a square in Copenhagen near the Russian Embassy after her father so that the world does not forget his contribution or the human rights values he stood for. Nemtsova responded that her father stood for building bridges between human rights and the prosperity of nations.
“The spirit of the event championed human rights and eye-opening healthy debate across the political spectrum in on the anniversary of the the UDHR,”
commented Valerie Peay, the director IOHR
In a statement on the event the Chair of Liberal International Human Rights Committee, Markus Loening spoke of “the values that underpin the Universal declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) that have been taken up and interpreted by liberal leaders the world over to positively transform the lives of millions over the past 70 years.”
Liberal International is the world federation of liberal and progressive democratic political parties. It was founded in Oxford in 1947, and has become the pre-eminent network for liberal parties and for the strengthening of liberalism around the world.
The Danish Social Liberal Party (Danish: Radikale Venstre, “Radical Left”, i.e. “Radical Liberal Party”) is a social-liberal political party founded in 1905 in Denmark. The party is a member of Liberal International and the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Party (ALDE).