Front Line Defenders
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (April 2012)|
|Services||Protecting human rights|
Front Line Defenders or The International Foundation for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders is an Irish-based human rights organisation founded in Dublin, Ireland in 2001 to protect human rights defenders at risk, i.e. those who work non-violently to uphold the human rights of others as outlined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The organisation was founded by Mary Lawlor, former director of the Irish Section of Amnesty International with a US $3 million donation from businessman and philanthropist Denis O'Brien. Front Line Defenders has Special Consultative Status with the Social and Economic Council of the United Nations, and has Observer Status with the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights. In 2006 Front Line Defenders established a European Union office in Brussels. Front Line Defenders received the King Baudouin International Development Prize in 2007. On 3 July 2014 Mary Lawlor was presented with the Order of Chevalier of the Legion of Honour by French Ambassador to Ireland, Mr Jean-Pierre Thebault, on behalf of the French government.
Front Line Defenders was established with the specific aim of protecting human rights defenders at risk, people who work, non-violently, for any or all of the rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Front Line Defenders aims to address the protection needs identified by defenders themselves. Front Line Defenders' overall goal is to enable human rights defenders, as key agents of social change, to continue their work without the risk of harassment, intimidation or arrest.
Front Line Defenders Award for Human Rights Defenders at Risk
In 2005 this award was established, which according to the organisations website is awarded to a human rights defender 'who through non-violent work, is courageously making an outstanding contribution to the promotion and protection of the human rights of others, often at great personal risk to themselves'.
The recipients of this award since its inception are as follows:
2014 - SAWERA - Society of Women Appraisal and Empowerment. Pakistan
2013 - Biram Dah Obeid, Mauritania
2012 - Razan Ghazzawi, Syria
2011 - Joint Mobile Group, Russian Federation
2010 - Soraya Rahim Sobhrang, Afghanistan
2009 - Yuri Melini, Guatemala
2008 - Anwar al-Bunni, Syria
2007 - Gégé Katana, Democratic Republic of Congo
2006 - Ahmadjan Madmarov, Uzbekistan
2005 - Mudawi Ibrahim Adam, Sudan
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