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Seminar to Mark the 75th Anniversary of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights

Monday, 11 December 2023, as on 15:30h

Roll Up SPA HHRR 0611.png


This year the world celebrates the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), a historic document drafted by representatives from all regions of the world that set out, for the first time, the fundamental human rights to be protected worldwide. Proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris on 10 December 1948 as a common standard of achievements for all peoples and all nations, it has since been translated into over 500 languages.


At 75, the Charter stands strong, but faces a number of growing and emerging challenges to its legitimacy and efficacy. Growing geopolitical divisions, newly emerging technologies and the acceleration of climate change are but a few of these factors that make it more imperative than ever to ensure that global human rights do not backslide and that the international community recognizes and embraces the need for more, not less, action on this key issue.


The Delegation of the European Union to Japan, supported by United Nations Information Centre, Tokyo, will thus mark this milestone year with a seminar that will focus minds on the role the UDHR plays today, the role it needs to play tomorrow and on the need to find common ground on how the envelope can be pushed further. How should the international community respond? What are the flexibilities offered by the Declaration to manage these challenges, and how do the EU, Japan and other Member States see the future of the Declaration?

Event outline

Information on the seminar:​

  • Dates and times: Monday, 11 December 2023, as on 15:30h

  • Venue: EU Delegation to Japan 

  • Address: 4-6-28 Minami-Azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-0047

  • Format: On-site, invitation only

  • Language: English / Japanese (simultaneous interpretation)

  • Organised by: The Delegation of the European Union to Japan,  supported by United Nations Information Centre, Tokyo

  • Admission:  Free​

  • *The session will get recorded

Programme (subject to amendments)


  • 15h30: Welcome

  • 15h35: Statement for Human Rights Day by H.E. Mr. Josep Borrell, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

  • 15h40: Opening remarks delivered by H.E. Ms Yoko Kamikawa, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan (video message)

  • 15h45: Keynote Speech by Ms. Belén Martinez Carbonell, Managing Director Global Agenda and Multilateral Relations, European External Action Service (online)

  • 15h55: Q&A from Pr. Ai Kihara-Hunt (University of Tokyo) and the audience

  • 16h10: Coffee break

  • 16h30: Moderated Panel Discussion with

    • H.E. Ms. Kristin Iglum, Ambassador of Norway to Japan

    • H.E. Mr. Philippe Setton, Ambassador of France to Japan

    • H.E. Mr. Jean-Eric Paquet, Ambassador of the European Union to Japan

    • Ms. Ms. Annelize Schroeder, Chargée d’Affaires a.i. of South Africa to Japan

  • 17h30: Q&A from audience

  • 18h00: Closing remarks by Ms. Kaoru Nemoto, Director of the United Nations Information Centre, Tokyo

  • 18h15: Start of reception

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