Statement on Human Rights Day


December 10, 2021 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada, today issued the following statement:

“All people deserve to have their fundamental human rights and freedoms respected. Today, we celebrate these basic principles on the day we enshrined this in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. Over the past 73 years, human rights have been the solid foundation upon which we have built a more equitable world. As the world recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, Canada will continue to put human rights at the forefront of its efforts.

“COVID-19 has increased existing inequalities, and has had a particularly heavy impact on individuals and groups whose rights were already threatened. Because of this, Canada’s response to the pandemic and our international engagement will continue to address the rights of marginalized people and those in vulnerable situations.

“And our work has continued to advance human rights worldwide. Consistent with our feminist foreign policy and the Feminist International Assistance Policy, Canada will continue to fight for gender equality and human rights through trade, security, diplomacy and international development assistance.

“Human rights belong to everyone, regardless of race, colour, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, language, ability, opinion, origin, property, birth or other status. Canada is committed to this principle and will continue to strive for a more equal world.” 


Syrine Khoury
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Todd Lane
Office of the Minister of International Development

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada
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