GENEVA (10 December 2018) – “I have learned with sadness that the human rights community has lost one of its greatest human rights defenders, Ms. Lyudmila Mikhaylovna Alexeyeva. She was a Russian historian, leading human rights activist and founding member of the Moscow Helisinki Group. She was an intrepid defender of the rights of vulnerable people in Russia and beyond.

The European Parliament in 2009 awarded Alexeyeva the prestigious Sakharov Prize For Freedom of Thought, along with the Memorial human rights organisation. ‘If I save even one person, it's already a true joy,’ she said at the time.

Her life and work inspired generations of human rights defenders around the globe.”


Today is the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the UN on 10 December 1948. The Universal Declaration – translated into a world record 500 languages – is rooted in the principle that “all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.” It remains relevant to everyone, every day. In honour of the 70thanniversary of this extraordinarily influential document, and to prevent its vital principles from being eroded, we are urging people everywhere to Stand Up for Human Rights: