by Michael von der Schulenburg
Although almost unnoticed today, 75 years ago, on 24 October 1945, the probably most important international treaty, the United Nations Charter, came into effect. Its aim was not only to end WWII, but to save, once and for all, succeeding generations from the scourge of war. In San Francisco, the victors against Nazi Germany pledged that not military power, but international cooperation and human rights, should govern future world affairs. For a generation that went through two World Wars and unimaginable human suffering and atrocities, the UN Charter brought hope for a lasting peace. Three years later, the Charter was complemented with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Taken together, the global ban to use military force and the universal respect for fundamental human rights were historical breakthroughs for humankind. As of today, 193 countries have signed the UN Charter.
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