(IHRDC 10 Dec 2010) International Human Rights Day is December 10. The theme this year is “human rights defenders who act to end discrimination.” Human Rights Day was established in 1950 to honor the adoption and proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on December 10, 1948. It is intended to highlight and promote the achievements of human rights defenders and emphasize the primary role governments must play in enabling and protecting their role. The Day is also intended to inspire a new generation of defenders to speak up and take action to end discrimination in all of its forms whenever and wherever it is manifested.
In commemoration of Human Rights Day, the Iran Human Rights Documentation Center recognizes and supports the lawyers of Iran who bravely defend targets of discrimination while putting the safety of themselves and their families at risk. Many defense attorneys are currently imprisoned while others have been forced to flee the country. In their honor, IHRDC is publishing an interview with 2003 Nobel Peace Prize winner and exiled Iranian human rights lawyer Shirin Ebadi, a first-hand witness account from prominent human rights activist and criminal defense attorney Shadi Sadr, and a commentary on the criminal justice system by Iranian criminal defense attorney Behnam Daraeizadeh.