Today International Partnership for Human Rights (IPHR) released Working Together for Human Rights – IPHR Annual Report for the Year 2019, which describes the work we carried out together with our partners over 2019 to fight against repression and injustice in the former Soviet Union (FSU).
During a highly challenging year for human rights in the FSU, IPHR continued to support civil society actors across this vast region to document and investigate violations, assist victims and advocate for accountability.
“We were impressed and inspired by the tireless efforts of our partners on the ground to protect the rights of those most vulnerable to discrimination and abuse,” said Brigitte Dufour, IPHR Director. “We were greatly encouraged to see increasing public participation, particularly amongst young people, in calling upon their governments to safeguard their rights and create more inclusive, democratic and environmentally sustainable societies,” she added.
As described in the report, IPHR’s activities in 2019 focused on promoting human rights in the South Caucasus (Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia), Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan), Russia, and Ukraine. In the implementation of our activities, we worked in close cooperation with civil society partners from these countries. Highlights of our activities during the year include:
We secured critically important financial support for the work of our partners in the FSU region by identifying funding opportunities and working with our partners on developing joint applications to international donors.
We built and strengthened in-country and cross-border cooperation among civil society actors in and beyond the FSU region by supporting coalition building and reinforcing existing networks, thereby ensuring more coordinated and effective civil society responses to current human rights issues.
We worked with our partners on researching and documenting human rights abuses taking place across our target region, as well as on bringing out this empirical evidence and analysis through publications, which were important sources of information for decision-makers, diplomats, experts, practitioners and others with an interest in the FSU.
We initiated joint in-depth investigations into pressing human rights issues through fact-finding missions to our target countries and interviews with victims and witnesses of violations.
Together with human rights defenders from the region, we conducted strategic advocacy that informed and influenced the policies of international institutions on human rights issues in our target countries. We were in regular contact with key officials, policymakers and focal points, and carried out targeted campaigning to maximize our impact.
We organized on-site trainings and webinars for human rights defenders and lawyers from the FSU region on key skills relevant to their documentation, campaigning, litigation and advocacy work.
We stepped up outreach, especially through social media channels, in order to raise awareness and mobilize support on human rights causes across the FSU region. A series of videos featuring personal, inspiring stories of human rights defenders in this region attracted wide attention.
Read more about the highlights of our work in 2019