In 1950, the United Nations General Assembly declared December 10 as Human Rights Day to draw the attention of the “peoples of the world” to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, signed two years earlier, as the first comprehensive instrument for the protection of human rights. For the first time in the history of mankind, the Declaration proclaims the common standards of human rights that should be achieved by all peoples and all nations of the world, “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights,” defines the first article of the declaration. It was not legally binding but more part of customary international law until the UN International Conference on Human Rights in 1968, when it was decided that the declaration was an obligation for all members of the international community. It is the basis for all further legally binding UN agreements on human rights, above all for the two important international pacts on civil and political rights and on economic, social and cultural rights.
In addition to this global level of human rights protection, which is achieved through UN instruments for the development and protection of human rights at the European regional level, the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms of the Council of Europe, adopted in 1950, is of particular importance.
Human rights are the fundamental rights of every person, acquired by birth, inalienable and indivisible, inherent in all human beings, regardless of nationality, residence, sex, national or ethnic origin, color, religion, language, or any other status. In the Republic of Serbia, human rights are guaranteed by the Constitution, generally accepted rules of international law, ratified international treaties and laws.
Over the past 20 years, the world has made fundamental progress in advancing women’s rights, developing international law to establish responsibility for human rights violations, protecting and promoting the rights of marginalized groups, and a much greater understanding of the universality and indivisibility of human rights.
As a member of the United Nations, the Republic of Serbia strives to contribute to the promotion of tolerance, equality and equity and to ensure the protection of human rights. The Republic of Serbia is already implementing a large number of received recommendations related to the prohibition of discrimination, improvement of the rights of national minorities, children and persons with disabilities, gender equality, prevention of domestic violence, and prevention of human trafficking.There are still problems in the Republic of Serbia that need to be overcome and appropriate measures should be taken in order to guarantee freedom of assembly, primarily for LGBT people, as well as to resolve the issue of domestic violence.