The Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity
and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of
the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and
peace in the world,
Whereas disregard and contempt for human
rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have ourtraged
the conscience of mankind, and the advent of a world in which
human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and
freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest
aspiration of the common people,
Whereas it is essential, if man is not
to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion
against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be
protected by the rule of law,
Whereas it is essential to promote the
development of friendly relations between nations,
Whereas the peoples of the United Nations
have in the Charter reaffirmed their faith in fundamental
human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person
and in the equal rights of men and women and have determined
to promote social progress and better standards of life in
Whereas Member States have pledged themselves
to achieve, in co-operation with the United Nations, the promotion
of universal respect for and pbservance of human rights and
Whereas a common understanding of these
rights and freedoms is of the greatest importance for the
full realisation of this pledge,
Now, therefore The General Assembly
proclaims this Universal Declaration of Human Right as a common
standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations, to
the end that every individual and every organ of society,
keeping this Declaration constantly in mind, shall strive
by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights
and freedoms and by progressive measures, national and international,
to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance,
both among the peoples of Member States themselves and among
the peoples and territories under their jurisdiction.
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.
They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act
towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
- Everyone is entitled to all the rights
and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction
of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion,
political or other opinion, national or social origin, property,
birth or other status.
- Furthermore, no distinction shall be
made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international
status of the country or territory to which a person belongs,
whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or
under any other limitation of sovereignty.
Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.
No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and
the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.
No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman
or degrading treatment or punishment.
Everyone has the right to recognition everywhere as a person
before the law.
All are equal before the law and are entitled without any
discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled
to equal protection against any discrimination in violation
of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination.
Everyone has the right to an effective remedy by the competent
national tribunals for acts violating the fundamental rights
granted him by the constitution or by law.
No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or
Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public
hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination
of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against
- Everyone charged with a penal offence
has the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty
according to law in a public trial at which he has had all
the guarantees necessary for his defence.
- No one shall be held guilty of any
penal offence on account of any act or omission which did
not constitute a penal offence, under national or international
law, at the time when it was committed. Nor shall a heavier
penalty be imposed than the one that was applicable at the
time the penal offence was committed.
No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his
privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon
his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection
of the law against such interference or attacks.
- Everyone has the right to freedom of
movement and residence within the borders of each State.
- Everyone has the right to leave any
country, including his own, and to return to his country.
- Everyone has the right to seek and
to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.
- This right may not be invoked in the
case of prosecutions genuinely arising from non-political
crimes or from acts contrary to the purposes and principles
of the United Nations.
- Everyone has the right to a nationality.
- No one shall be arbitrarily deprived
of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.
- Men and women of full age, without
any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have
the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled
to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its
- Marriage shall be entered into only
with free and full consent of the intending spouses.
- Everyone has the right to own property
alone as well as in association with others.
- No one shall be arbitrarily deprived
of his property.
Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and
religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion
or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with
others and in public or private, to manifest his religion
or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression;
this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference
and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through
any media and regardless of frontiers.
- Everyone has the right to freedom of
peaceful assembly and association.
- No one may be compelled to belong to
- Everyone has the right to take part
in the government of his country, directly or through freely
- Everyone has the right to equal access
to public service in his country.
- The will of the people shall be the
basis of the authority of government; this will shall be
expressed in periodic and genuine elections which shall
be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by
secret vote or by equivalent free voting procedures.
Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social
security and is entitled to realization, through national
effort and international co-operation and in accordance with
the organization and resources of each State, of the economic,
social and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and
the free development of his personality.
- Everyone has the right to work, to
free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions
of work and to protection against unemployment.
- Everyone, without any discrimination,
has the right to equal pay for equal work.
- Everyone who works has the right to
just and favourable remuneration ensuring for himself and
his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and supplemented,
if necessary, by other means of social protection.
- Everyone has the right to form and
to join trade unions for the protection of his interests.
Everyone has the right to rest and leisure, including reasonable
limitation of working hours and periodic holidays with pay.
- Everyone has the right to a standard
of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself
and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and
medical care and necessary social services, and the right
to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability,
widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances
beyond his control.
- Motherhood and childhood are entitled
to special care and assistance. All children, whether born
in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.
- Everyone has the right to education.
Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and
fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory.
Technical and professional education shall be made generally
available and higher education shall be equally accessible
to all on the basis of merit.
- Education shall be directed to the
full development of the human personality and to the strengthening
of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It
shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among
all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further
the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance
- Parents have a prior right to choose
the kind of education that shall be given to their children.
- Everyone has the right freely to participate
in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts
and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits.
- Everyone has the right to the protection
of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific,
literary or artistic production of which he is the author.
Everyone is entitled to a social and international order in
which the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration
can be fully realized.
- Everyone has duties to the community
in which alone the free and full development of his personality
- In the exercise of his rights and freedoms,
everyone shall be subject only to such limitations as are
determined by law solely for the purpose of securing due
recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others
and of meeting the just requirements of morality, public
order and the general welfare in a democratic society.
- These rights and freedoms may in no
case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles
of the United Nations.
Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying
for any State, group or person any right to engage in any
activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of
any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein.