The Christian Science Monitor

Populist wave, 'crisis overload' weaken global voices for human rights

It is 70 years since Eleanor Roosevelt diplomatically steered the United Nations toward adopting the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, thus making such rights a key operating principle in world affairs.

And in the struggle to secure them since then, millions upon millions of people have won greater freedoms, better schooling, more reliable health care, and broader opportunities to be who they dreamed of being.

Yet nowadays, the top UN human rights official lamented last month, “human rights are sorely under pressure around the world – no longer a priority: a pariah."

“The legitimacy of human rights principles is attacked. The practice of human rights norms is in retreat,” added Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Major shift over 20 yearsProtecting those who violate rightsDemonizing minorities

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