The ACT Baha’i community celebrated Human Rights Day with a multifaith service and artistic performances on the theme “Fighting Poverty: A Matter of Rights, not Charity”.
UNIC Canberra Director, Mr Christopher Woodthorpe read the Secretary-General’s message, marking the 20th anniversary of the adoption by the World Conference on Human Rights of the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action.
“Drawing on the participation of more than 800 non-governmental organizations, national institutions, treaty bodies and academics, Member States adopted a far-reaching vision and created the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), thereby realizing one of the international community’s long-held dream,” he said to an audience of parliamentarians and representatives from a number of religions.
Mr Woodthorpe also spoke about the need of the new post-2015 development agenda to be anchored in human rights and universally accepted values and principles.
Professor Fariborz Moshirian from the University of New South Wales highlighted the importance of international organisations in dealing with global issues in his keynote address.
A number of messages from a range of faiths were also read at the ceremony, which also included a moving play called “Worlds Apart” and musical performance by young students.