That would be today, October 17 - every year since 1987.
ON THIS DAY, DEFENDERS OF HUMAN AND CIVIL RIGHTS FROM EVERY CONTINENT GATHERED HERE. THEY PAID HOMAGE TO THE VICTIMS OF HUNGER, IGNORANCE AND VIOLENCE. THEY AFFIRMED THEIR CONVICTION THAT HUMAN MISERY IS NOT INEVITABLE. THEY PLEDGED THEIR SOLIDARITY WITH ALL PEOPLE WHO, THROUGHOUT THE WORLD, STRIVE TO ERADICATE EXTREME POVERTY.
“WHEREVER HUMAN BEINGS ARE CONDEMNED TO LIVE IN EXTREME POVERTY, HUMAN RIGHTS ARE VIOLATED. TO COME TOGETHER TO ENSURE THAT THESE RIGHTS BE RESPECTED IS OUR SOLEMN DUTY.”
On October 17, 1992, it was officially celebrated by the United Nations for the first time. I personally was in France that day, at the Plaza of Human Rights and Liberties in Paris, just up from the Eiffel Tower, during my internship at the international headquarters of the International Fourth World Movement (ATD Quart Monde). It remains a significant day for me to remember the hard work of so many people around the world to overcome poverty - in their own lives and in the lives of others. It is a day to rededicate ourselves to this work.
For more information about celebrations around the world today, visit the international website, www.oct17.org.
I really like the quote in French but I can't figure out how to type letters with accents:
La ou des hommes sont condamnes a vivre dans la misere,
les droits de l'homme sont violes.
S'unir pour les faire respecter est un devoir sacre.
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