The UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights, Mary Lawlor, has spoken about the difficulties facing human rights defenders globally. She said:
“I look back on 2022 with a mixture of admiration for those brave human rights defenders who have refused to be silenced, and dismay at the weasel words of politicians and corporate leaders who in their pursuit of power undermine human rights and marginalise those who defend them.
“I am humbled by the courage and dedication of people like this year’s Nobel Peace Prize winners Ales Bialiaski, from Belarus, Russian human rights organisation Memorial, and the Ukrainian Center for Civil Liberties. Ales has been in pre-trial detention since 2021 in Belarus, Memorial has been declared a foreign agent and has spent most of the last year in court fighting against its forced closure, and the Centre for Civil Liberties continues its work documenting war crimes in Ukraine. All three refuse to give up.
“They are not alone. All over the world, thousands of human rights defenders continue the peaceful struggle for the rights of others. Their reward is intimidation, unfair trials on spurious charges, physical and digital attacks, torture, imprisonment and killings.”
Full report here in the Irish Times:
Special Rapporteur web pages:
Image: Mary Lawlor (From Irish Times)
AGS Celtic League (12 January 2023)
Note: The Celtic League is a fully accredited NGO of the UN Economic and Social Committee (ECOSOC)