HRD Memorial launched to commemorate slain defenders Video
On 24 November, an international coalition of national and international human rights organisations launched the HRD Memorial website and database. This is a unique project aimed to commemorate all the human rights defenders (HRDs) who have been killed since the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Defenders came into effect in 1998.
For the first time ever there will be a dedicated resource which will give a true picture of the scale of killings of HRDs world wide. Since 1998 an estimated 3,500 HRDs have been killed because of their peaceful work defending the rights of others.
The goal of the project is to keep the memory of HRDs who have been killed alive and to celebrate their courage and achievements. The HRD Memorial is a way of using the truth to confront those governments who think that HRDs are expendable people who can be eliminated without consequences. It is also a way of sending a message of solidarity and support to their family, friends and colleagues reminding them that they have not been forgotten. In addition, the project highlights the scale of the problem and will provide a basis for effective advocacy and campaigning to increase the political cost of killing a HRD to such an extent that governments, or their allies will think twice.
"This is a crucial moment. Human rights are under attack. The most extreme aspect of the attack is the killing of HRDs. And we need to be working now to stop the killings of HRDs,” Andrew Anderson, Executive Director at Front Line Defenders said.