By the President of the United States of America
Twenty-rive years ago, the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights proclaimed that "all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights." This reaffirmed an eternal truth that Thomas Jefferson in 1776 wrote into our own Declaration of Independence. Another great thinker, Edmund Burke, observed simply that "the cause of Freedom is the cause of God." Some twenty-five centuries before, the prophet Isaiah admonished the world "To bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives."
Free people, if they are to remain free, must defend the liberty of others. As the custodians of a democratic tradition firmly established on this continent more than two centuries ago, Americans are deeply committed to the goal of representative government everywhere.
Each year, the United States reaffirms its commitment to the cause of liberty during Captive Nations Week, by reminding all those who are forced to live under the domination of foreign military power and alien ideology that the United States supports their aspirations for freedom, independence and national self-determination.
The Congress, by a joint resolution approved July 17, 1959 (73 Stat. 212), has authorized and requested the President to proclaim the third week in July as Captive Nations Week.
Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate the week beginning July 17, 1983, as Captive Nations Week. I invite the people of the United States to observe this week with appropriate ceremonies and activities and to reaffirm their dedication to the ideals of freedom, which unite us and inspire others.
In Witness Whereof I have hereunto set my hand this 6th. day of June, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and seventh.