Launch of the Agenda for Human Rights

Bern, 05.12.2008 - Today, 5 December 2008, Federal Councillor Micheline Calmy-Rey will launch in Geneva an “Agenda for Human Rights” authored by a panel of eminent persons. The Agenda is a Swiss initiative and forms part of the 60th anniversary celebrations of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The aim of the “Agenda for Human Rights” is to assess the development of human rights over the last 60 years and to point to ways in which human rights protection can be improved in the 21st century. The document was drafted by a panel of eight eminent persons co-chaired by Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland and former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the Brazilian human rights expert, Professor Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro. 

The panel identified eight specific areas for further study and research by research institutes on different continents following the launch of the “Agenda for Human Rights”. These are: human dignity, prevention, detention, migration, statelessness, the right to health, climate change and human rights, and a world court of human rights. An additional aim is to motivate as many states as possible to support the “Agenda for Human Rights” through their actions and in this way contribute to improving the human rights situation worldwide. The Swiss initiative has the support of Norway and Austria. 

The “Agenda for Human Rights” will be officially launched at a ceremony in Geneva on 5 December 2008 in the presence of the members of the panel, the president of the Human Rights Council and representatives of the City and of the Canton of Geneva. Before the ceremony, Mrs Calmy-Rey will unveil a plaque in honour of Eleanor Roosevelt on the Place des Nations in Geneva.  

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was proclaimed in Paris on 10 December 1948 by the United Nations General Assembly.

Address for enquiries

Press and Information Service
Bundeshaus West
CH-3003 Bern
Tel.: (+41) 031 322 31 53
Fax: (+41) 031 324 90 47


Federal Department of Foreign Affairs