“Wherever we live, whatever our circumstances or place in society, our race, color, gender or sexual orientation, language, religion, opinion, nationality or economic status, we are all equal in human rights and dignity,” António Guterres declared. As part of UN activities in observance of Human Rights Day, which coincided with the Declaration’s anniversary, champions in the field from across the world convened at the General Assembly Hall to be recognized for their outstanding contributions. Every five years, The United Nations Prize in the Field of Human Rights is awarded to organizations and individuals who embody excellent activism in defending human rights. The 2018 winners are: Rebeca Gyumi of Tanzania, for her work with women and girls. She led a campaign that prompted the repeal of a Tanzanian law in 2016, which once permitted girls as young as 14 to be married off. Asma Jahangir of Pakistan, a human rights lawyer – whose daughter, Munizae, received the award on her behalf. Mrs. Jahangir, who passed away in February 2018, fought against religious extremism and for the rights of oppressed minorities. Joênia Wapixana (known also as Joenia Batista de Carvalho) of Brazil, an advocate on behalf of indigenous communities. Front-Line Defenders, an Irish organization which works for the protection of human rights defenders. The four winners join a small but notable group who have been recognized since The Prize was established by the General Assembly in 1966, including prominent figures such as Eleanor Roosevelt, Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, Jimmy Carter, and others.

Source: UN News
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