The United Nations, through its various bodies and mechanisms, has issued several key documents and declarations that outline principles and standards for human rights. Some of the most important ones include:
Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR): Adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 10, 1948, the UDHR is a milestone document that proclaims the inalienable rights which everyone is entitled to as a human being, regardless of race, color, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth, or other status.
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR): This treaty was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1966 and entered into force in 1976. The ICCPR protects civil and political rights, including the right to life, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and the right to participate in public life through voting and standing for election.
International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ICESCR): Also adopted in 1966 and entering into force in 1976, the ICESCR focuses on economic, social, and cultural rights, such as the right to work, the right to education, the right to health, and the right to an adequate standard of living.
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW): Adopted in 1979, CEDAW is an international treaty that addresses gender-based discrimination and aims to ensure equal rights for women in various spheres of life.
Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC): Adopted in 1989, the CRC outlines the rights of children and sets standards for their protection, well-being, and development.
Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT): Adopted in 1984, CAT aims to prevent and punish torture and other forms of ill-treatment worldwide.
Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (DRIP): Adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2007, DRIP establishes a framework of minimum standards for the survival, dignity, and well-being of indigenous peoples around the world.
The United Nations continues to work towards promoting and protecting human rights through various mechanisms, including special rapporteurs, human rights councils, and peacekeeping missions. However, please note that the landscape of human rights and international affairs may have evolved since my last update, so I recommend checking the official United Nations website or other authoritative sources for the latest developments and directions on human rights.