According to the United Nationas, democracy is a universal value based on the freely expressed will of people to determine their own political, economic, social and cultural systems and their full participation in all aspects of their lives.
The UN General Assembly, in resolution A/62/7 (2007) encouraged governments to strengthen national programmes devoted to the promotion and consolidation of democracy, and also decided that September 15 of each year should be observed as the International Day of Democracy.
This year’s theme – Engaging Young People on Democracy – highlights the challenges and opportunities of young people engaging in democratic processes.
Issuing his message on the International Day of Democracy, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stated that in many regions and in many ways, the values of the United Nations, including some of the most fundamental rights and freedoms enshrined in the UN Charter, are being tested and challenged.
He further stated:
"I call on members of the largest generation of youth in history to confront challenges and consider what you can do to resolve them. To take control of your destiny and translate your dreams into a better future for all."