Front Line Defenders
|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:
- 2005 - Mudawi Ibrahim Adam, Sudan
- 2006 - Ahmadjan Madmarov, Uzbekistan
- 2007 - Gégé Katana, Democratic Republic of Congo
- 2008 - Anwar al-Bunni, Syria
- 2009 - Yuri Melini, Guatemala
- 2010 - Soraya Rahim Sobhrang, Afghanistan
- 2011 - Joint Mobile Group, Russian Federation
- 2012 - Razan Ghazzawi, Syria
- 2013 - Biram Dah Abeid, Mauritania
- 2014 - SAWERA - Society for Appraisal and Women Empowerment in Rural Areas. Pakistan
- 2015 - Guo Feixiong, pen name for Yang Maodong, China
- The Front Line Defenders Award for Human Rights Defenders at Risk at the Wayback Machine (archived February 15, 2016) Front Line Defenders.
- Thoolen, Hans (12 September 2015). 2015 Front Line Defenders Award to Chinese Guo Feixiong (Yang Maodong) Hans Thoolen on Human Rights Defenders. Retrieved 12 March 2016.