Posts Tagged ‘insecurity’

Save the date: 14 January 2020 Webinar on protection of human rights defenders in development

December 1, 2019

The Human Rights Funders Network announces a WEBINAR: “Uncalculated Risks: How funders can address threats to human rights defenders in development” to be held on 14 January 2020.

Sheryl Mendez of Freedom House, Katie Skartvedt and Greg Regaignon of Wellspring Philanthropic Fund, and Mark Fodor and Gretchen Gordon of the Coalition for Rights in Development, discuss how funders can use the report, Uncalculated Risks: Threats and attacks against human rights defenders and the role of development financiers, as a tool in their work.See: information (including a time and registration link) will be available soon!

Two Dutch calls for human rights defenders in need

May 23, 2018

Justice and Peace NL is launching a new call for Human Rights Defenders to participate in the Shelter City Initiative which offers human rights defenders a possibility for rest and respite by letting them escape temporarily from a threatening situation. Shelter City offer a safe space to human rights defenders at a moment where they are particularly vulnerable and their security can no longer be guaranteed at home. The programme’s objective is to offer the human rights defender a shelter for three months, during which she/he will rest, build up capacity, extend her/his network and raise awareness about the situation in their country. At the end of the programme, participants are expected to return with new tools and energy to carry out their work at home. An important principle of the Shelter City Initiative is that human rights defenders can continue their work while they are temporarily relocated. From September 2018, eleven cities in the Netherlands will receive human rights defenders for a period of three months. Please circulate this message to all interested candidates who you may know.
In order to be eligible to the Shelter City program, you must meet the following conditions:

  1. The HRD should implement a non-violent approach in his/her work
  2. They are threatened or otherwise under pressure due to their work.
  3. They should be able to be relocated for a period of maximum 3 months. Limited spots are available for people who are not able to stay for the full 3 months;
  4. They are willing and able to return to their country of origin after 3 months;
  5. They are willing to speak publicly about their experience or about human rights in their country to the extent that their security situation allows.
  6. They can speak basic English (limited spots are available for French or Spanish speaking HRDs);
  7. They are willing and able to come to the Netherlands without accompaniment;
  8. They are willing to begin their stay in the Netherlands around September 2018. 

Note that additional factors will be taken into consideration in the final round of selection, such as the added value of a stay in the Netherlands as well as gender, geographic, and thematic balance.
To apply or submit the application of a human rights defender, please e-mail . You will then receive an application form. Application forms must be returned before 11 June 2018. An independent commission will select the participants.

See also:

Justice and Peace Netherlands – together with T.M.C. Asser Institute – are also launching a new call for applications for the 2018 Fellowship Programme for Human Rights Defenders. See:<><


PBI demand guarantees of security for human rights defenders in Mexico

April 12, 2013

During the night of April 3rd, the offices of the Mexican Committee for the Integral Defense of Human Rights Gobixha (Código DH) were forcibly entered. Personnel noticed the entry when they arrived at the office at 8:20am and found the door unlocked and the padlock partially open. They found the computer was turned on and that someone had gone through the records kept at the desk, taking several of them. It is also probable that they went through digital documents found on the computer. These events were denounced before SEGOB, the Special Prosecutors Office for Crimes of Social Significance of the Attorney Generals Office and the Federal Police. In Oaxaca in recent months a climate of intimidation and harassment of community defenders, to whom Peace Brigades International (PBI) provide accompaniment, has been generated. Some of these defenders have also recently been detained. PBI demand that the state and federal government of Mexico secure conditions for the work of human rights defenders!

via Codigo-DH: We demand guarantees of security for human rights defenders: PBI.


Human rights defenders’ offices in Uganda suffer from lack of security

April 12, 2013

The Ugandan Observer  reported that the NGO Foundation for Human Rights Initiative (FHRI)  has been the target of break-ins three times in five years at their Nsambya office. According to Livingstone Sewanyana, the executive director of FHRI, such break-ins and robberies don’t only demoralise them, but also have become a threat to the work and confidentiality of their documents in particular. “We don’t feel at ease when such events happen,” he says, “we have lost a lot of data and that’s a big threat to our work.” FHRI is not the only human rights defenders HRD organisation that has been broken into by unknown persons, taking documents and computers. Last December, the office of the Sexual Minorities of Uganda SMUG was broken into, with a lot of equipment stolen. A report assessing the environment in which human rights defenders operated last year, shows that actually, a host of civil society organisations were broken into – a fact seen as a way of crippling their operations in the country.  “HRDs, especially within the civil society, who draw attention to human rights violations sometimes have become visible targets susceptible to reprisals,” notes the recently-released Human Rights Defenders in Uganda report: “The Quest for A Better Working Environment, Vol II, 2012” (by the Human Rights Centre Uganda).

These cases are reported to police but according to Sewanyana, there has not been much help.“We have reported all these to police. We have written statements but not a single suspect has been arrested,” Ssewanyana told The Observer. However, Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson Ibin Ssenkumbi says they have to follow due procedure. “Police is doing its work and when the investigations are done, the perpetrators will be brought to book,” he says.

via The Observer – Human rights defenders decry persecution.