President Mohamed Nasheed, in his message on the occasion of the International Human Rights Day, has said that the essence of the reform movements was to “create a society in which all of us have equal rights”.

He added that the “new country that we are trying to build is one premised on the ideal of equality for all”.

Human Rights Day is celebrated annually across the world on 10 December. The date marks the United Nations General Assembly's adoption and proclamation, on 10 December 1948, of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).

The Human Rights day theme for this year is "All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights."

In his message, President Nasheed noted that “divisions of birth and opportunity” has kept the Maldivian society fragmented.

“For too long our society has accepted the shameful truth that the future of a child born in the Maldives does not rest on his or her ability or intelligence, nor on how hard he or she works; but rather on who the child's father is, whether the family is politically connected, and whether the family can afford to send the child abroad to study”, said the President.

The President also said that ideals of equality and non-discrimination remind us “the paramount duty of government and society to...provide each of us with equal access to the social, economic and political life of the country”.

Continuing in this regard, the President said that we have a responsibility “to strive to ensure that our society provides a platform upon which each and every child has an equal opportunity to live a long and prosperous life and to fulfil his or her potential”.

In concluding his message, the President called on all Maldivians to work with him to create “a fairer, more equal and more just Maldives”.