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On December 10, the Empire State Building and Toronto’s CN Tower will shine bright blue to honor Human Rights Day

(New York) – Human Rights Watch has arranged for 17 landmarks across the globe to shine bright blue on December 10, 2019, to celebrate Human Rights Day. From New York to Sydney, Munich to Toronto, the world will light up in solidarity with the fundamental principles of human dignity that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights affirms, and that Human Rights Watch works to defend each day.

“Human Rights Watch is working to build a world where everyone is free to say what they believe and to marry the person they love,where they can put food on the table and send their kids to school,” said Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch. “We’re part of a movement that puts the dignity of each and every person on this planet before any politician’s quest for power or profit.”

“Youth Standing Up for Human Rights” is the theme chosen for Human Rights Day in 2019 by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, who noted that “it is particularly fitting that this year we mark Human Rights Day during the crucial UN conference in Madrid to uphold climate justice. We owe a debt of gratitude to all those millions of children, teenagers and young adults who have been standing up and speaking out more and more loudly about the crisis facing our planet.”

Countries across the world honor Human Rights Day each year to mark the adoption in 1948 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – a milestone document that proclaimed the inalienable rights to which everyone is inherently entitled without discrimination of any kind.

Since 2013, the New York City’s Empire State Building – home to the Human Rights Watch global headquarters – has lit its spire in blue lights to commemorate Human Rights Day. This year, the following landmarks around the world will shine blue to mark the day:

  • Empire State Building, New York (US)
  • Broad Museum, Los Angeles (US)
  • The National Historic Landmark Freedom Tower at Miami Dade College, Miami (US)
  • BC Place Stadium, Vancouver (Canada)
  • Vancouver Convention Centre, Vancouver (Canada)
  • Calgary Tower, Calgary (Canada)
  • 3D Toronto Sign, Toronto (Canada)
  • CN Tower, Toronto (Canada)
  • The Montréal Tower, Montréal (Canada)
  • Grand Place, Brussels (Belgium)
  • Tollwood Festival, Munich (Germany)
  • Paulskirche, Frankfurt (Germany)
  • Somerset House, London (United Kingdom)
  • London Eye, London (United Kingdom)
  • Flinders Street Station, Melbourne (Australia)
  • International Towers, Sydney (Australia)
  • State Library of New South Wales, Sydney (Australia)

Human Rights Watch investigates and reports on abuses happening in all corners of the world. We are roughly 450 people of 70-plus nationalities who are country experts, lawyers, journalists, and others who work to protect the most at risk, from vulnerable minorities and civilians in wartime, to refugees and children in need. We direct our advocacy towards governments, armed groups, and businesses, pushing them to change or enforce their laws, policies, and practices. To ensure our independence, we refuse government funding and corporate ties. We partner with organizations large and small across the globe to protect embattled activists and to help hold abusers to account and bring justice to victims.


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