The Government has kicked off the events to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with the “Right to Memory” seminar. This seminar defended the recovery of historical memory as an essential human right in order to make progress in the reparation of structural discrimination and violence.

This was the first of the events that the Catalan Government will be holding throughout the year to defend the validity of Human Rights and the importance of preserving and guaranteeing them. The Ministers for Equality and Feminisms, Tània Verge Mestre, and for Justice, Rights and Memory, Gemma Ubasart i González, took part in the seminar.

During her talk, Verge explained that “events such as this vindicate the validity of human rights and put them at the forefront of the political agenda.” The Minister noted that “human rights are the backbone of the Government’s work to guarantee all citizens a life free of discrimination and violence. Without human rights and equality, democracy is not possible,” adding that “it is the obligation of institutions to establish measures to guarantee these rights.”

The Minister for Equality and Feminisms also highlighted that “defending the right to memory means looking back in order to be able to look forward. We defend collective memory as a human right linked to the rights to truth, justice, reparation and to be part of a community, because talking about the past is also part of the process of reparation for victims,” she concluded.

Gemma Ubasart also stressed this point, adding that “democratic memory and human rights are two mutually reinforcing concepts – we hold onto memory to help further the realisation of human rights, for the objectives of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recidivism.”

A celebration included in Catalonia’s Human Rights Strategy

The events to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights form part of the Human Rights Strategy of Catalonia recently approved by the Catalan Government. The Government wants the anniversary to be an opportunity to defend the validity of human rights and to underline its commitment to defending them and their importance in achieving a more equitable and just society.

Throughout the year, numerous events and activities will be organised with the participation of various departments and institutions from across Catalonia, with the aim of expanding public awareness of both the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Human Rights in their most contemporary reading, to help Catalonia lead the way in terms of the emerging Human Rights of the 21st century.

Among other things, an exhibition is planned at Palau Robert in Barcelona, which will be opened during the main commemorative event to be held on 10 December, International Human Rights Day. Over the next few months, events will be held across Catalonia, specific reports and works will be published and some twenty talks will be given, organised in collaboration with the Institut de Drets Humans de Catalunya (Human Rights Institute of Catalonia).



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