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Promoting and Protecting Human Rights

President Obama declared Human Rights Week beginning Saturday, December 10th. Human Rights Week celebrates our basic freedoms and renews the United States’ commitment to supporting and advancing every person’s right to human dignity.

The United States works with other governments, organizations and institutions to promote and work towards human rights for all. The State Department pushes to:

  • Hold governments accountable to their obligations under universal human rights norms and international human rights instruments;
  • Promote greater respect for human rights, including freedom from torture, freedom of expression, press freedom, women’s rights, children’s rights, and the protection of minorities;
  • Promote the rule of law, seek accountability, and change cultures of impunity;
  • Assist efforts to reform and strengthen the institutional capacity of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the United Nations Commission on Human Rights; and
  • Coordinate human rights activities with important allies, including the European Union, and regional organizations.

Learn more about Human Rights Week at