When human rights defenders are killed or forcibly disappeared with impunity, the signal given by the authorities is contempt for the human rights of everyone. Human rights defenders (HRDs) play a key role in defending the principles of freedom, justice and dignity which underpin the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Their work contributes directly to the realization of human rights, the strengthening of the rule of law, and fostering sustainable development. In 1998, the international community recognized the important role carried out by these civil society actors when the UN General Assembly adopted by consensus the UN Declaration on the Right and Responsibility of Individuals, Groups and Organs of Society to Promote and Protect Universally Recognized Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, referred to as the Declaration on HRDs. The Declaration emphasizes that recognition and protection of human rights defenders are key to ensure they can work in a safe environment.
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Categories: Human Rights Defenders