World Leaders Seek to Restore Original Meaning of Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Also present was pro-life advocate Lila Rose, president of Live Action.

More than 200 world leaders gather at the U.N. headquarters in New York on Nov. 18.
More than 200 world leaders gather at the U.N. headquarters in New York on Nov. 18. (photo: Political Network for Values via CNA)

The fifth Transatlantic Summit organized by The Political Network for Values (PNfV) last week brought together more than 200 leaders from 40 countries around the world who signed the “New York Commitment,” which seeks to restore the original meaning of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) on the occasion the 75th anniversary of its proclamation.

The “New York Commitment,” according to an article posted Nov. 18 on the PNfV’s website, “gives visibility to a broad consensus that exists on all continents regarding the need to affirm the dignity of the person and fundamental values, especially, life, the family, and freedoms.” 

“We are here to bring forth, in its original sense, the agreement of 1948. We must return to the human person and, from there, ensure his fundamental rights. It is precisely here, at the United Nations, that our voice needs to be heard. We assert the timeless and transcendent principles that inspired the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” José Antonio Kast, former presidential candidate in Chile and president of the PNfV, said at U.N. headquarters in New York.

“It is precisely here, at the United Nations, that our voice needs to be heard. We assert the timeless and transcendent principles that inspired the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” he added.

The leaders from around the world committed to working “to establish environments favorable to the formation and stability of the family; to protect children, both before and after birth; and to respect the freedom of parents and legal guardians to provide the religious and moral education of their children in accordance with their own convictions.”

They also pledged to “promote respect for the various religious and ethical values, cultural backgrounds, and philosophical convictions of the peoples of the world, as well as the sovereignty of states in matters that are within their internal jurisdiction.”

Margarita de la Pisa, a member of the European Parliament, pointed out that these rights, far from being “regressive,” are the basis of true human development. “Defending life, for example, means a political commitment to prosperity,” she stressed.

Hafid El-Hachimi, official of the Independent Standing Commission on Human Rights of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, stated that “families are the fundamental unit for the sustainable, cultural and economic development of society, so seeking redefinitions of the family means compromising the future.”

The fifth Transatlantic Summit was held in Room 4 of the U.N. Nov. 16-17, with the theme “Affirming Universal Human Rights — Uniting Cultures for Life, Family and Freedoms.”

Participants included Erwin Ronquillo, minister of child protection of Ecuador; Raúl Latorre, president of Paraguay’s Chamber of Deputies (representatives); Lucy Akello, Ugandan member of Parliament (MP); Päivi Räsänen, Finnish MP (recently acquitted of hate speech for tweeting a Bible verse on homosexuality); Corina Cano, vice president of the National Assembly of Panama; Germán Blanco, senator from Colombia; Nikolas Ferreira of Brazil; Santiago Santurio, Argentine legislator; and Rafael López Aliaga, the mayor of Lima, Peru (by video).

Also present were Lila Rose, president of Live Action; Valerie Huber, promoter of the Geneva Consensus Declaration and president of the Institute for Women’s Health; Sharon Slater, president of Family Watch International; and Dawn Hawkins, executive director of the International Center on Sexual Exploitation.

Other leaders participating were Neydy Casillas, vice president of international affairs at the Global Center for Human Rights; Ádám Kavecsánszki, president of the Foundation for a Civic Hungary; Austin Ruse, president of C-Fam; Brett Schaefer, Heritage Foundation research fellow; and Peter Torcsi, director of operations at the Center for Fundamental Rights.

The PNfV is an international network of politicians committed to the promotion and defense of life, family and freedoms.

This story was first published by ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.

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