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Human rights are safe only when all are protected, Pope says

December 11, 2008

The dignity of human beings will only be guaranteed "when all the fundamental rights are recognized, defended, and promoted," Pope Benedict XVI told a Vatican audience on December 11, after a concert celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. These rights, the Holy Father said, "are a universal given, since they form part of the very nature of humanity." They are based upon natural law, which is "inscribed by the Creator in human consciousness," he added.

The Pope spoke after a performance by the Brandenburgisches Staatsorchester of Frankfurt in the Paul VI auditorium. The concert featured the music of Mozart, Mendelssohn, Ponchielli, and Manuel de Falla. The orchestra was directed by Inma Shara, the first woman to conduct such a performance at the Vatican.


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