Reunited: Human Rights Houses Network Meeting 2023
After several years of unprecedented global events, the Network of Human Rights Houses convened in Warsaw from 20-24 November for the first in-person Network meeting since 2019. Colleagues from 28 CSOs from 12 countries reconnected to discuss successes, common challenges, and emerging human rights trends. Together, the Network welcomed its newest member, Human Rights House Banja Luka.
Shelling and disguises: a human rights defender’s life under Russian occupation
Oksana Tropina is a human rights defender from Kherson. She remained in the city during the Russian occupation from February to November 2022. In this interview, she discusses life and human rights under occupation as well as evacuation.
Holding Russia accountable for violations at home and abroad and other priorities at HRC54
Human Rights House Foundation (HRHF) was active throughout the 54th session of the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) advocating on key issues including calling for the renewal of the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on human rights in Russia, as well as the issue of reprisals for civil society engaging with the UN, and the human rights situations in Belarus, Georgia, Serbia and Ukraine.
Building the capacity of the next generation of Council of Europe changemakers
14 human rights defenders refined their advocacy skills and deepened their knowledge of Council of Europe (CoE) advocacy throughout 2023 as part of the Human Rights House Foundation’s Advocacy Capacity Building Programme, co-funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the European Union.
When I communicate with [political prisoners] and their relatives, I tell them that [legal action] will not significantly affect their immediate situation, but it must be done.
On 24 February 2022, human rights lawyer Serghiy Zayets and his family became internally displaced persons (IDPs) for the second time as a result of the full-scale Russian invasion. They fled Irpin for Western Ukraine, where they still live today. Originally from Crimea, Zayets and his family fled the peninsula in 2014 following the Russian occupation. In this interview with HRHF, Zayets gives insight into his fight for the human rights of Ukrainian political prisoners in Russian custody and the volatile nature of living and working in a war zone.
In Search for Solidarity: Connecting human rights defenders in Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova
In 2022, 480+ participants new to human rights and of diverse backgrounds from Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova participated in the “In Search for Solidarity” project. The project resulted in several joint initiatives and established cooperation across borders as participants explored shared history and challenges together.
Advocating for human rights in Belarus, Ukraine & more – our work at HRC53
At the 53rd session of the UN Human Rights Council, Human Rights House Foundation (HRHF) continued to underline the alarming human rights trends prevailing in Eastern Europe. Alongside members of the Network of Human Rights Houses and other partners, HRHF once again urged the Council to adopt decisive measures in response to the pressing regional crisis, including on the issues of freedom of expression, assembly, and association, as well as pressure facing judges and lawyers.
Belarusian youth speaks out for change
“We look at ourselves to see the state we are in as we make our journey to a free Belarus.” RADA, a Belarusian union of 37 youth organisations, has collected and published “Belarus. Youth. Long Live.”, an analysis of the current state of the independent youth sector in the country.
“Without dreaming big there is no thinking big” – Network workshop on building impactful projects
From 12-15 June 2023, 20 participants from the Network of Human Rights Houses gathered in Vilnius, Lithuania, for “From Idea to Impact”, a workshop organised by Human Rights House Foundation focused on designing and implementing impactful human rights projects. The workshop was co-funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the European Union.