Declaration+25: Articulating international standards to protect the right to defend rights

Following a year-long project involving consultations with human rights defenders, a coalition of 18 international and regional human rights organisations released the Declaration +25, a landmark document complementing the 1998 UN Declaration  on  Human Rights Defenders taking into account relevant regional and international jurisprudential developments of the last 25 years. 

The principles contained in the two documents together represent a baseline for the protection and promotion of human rights defenders while addressing their enduring and evolving needs.

The project commenced in 2023 with the coalition of 18 organisations conducting online and in person consultations with defenders from all over the world to identify the key issues they faced in the defence of human rights that were not fully addressed by the 1998 Declaration, and analyse developments in international and regional contexts and jurisprudence.

Over 700 human rights defenders from all regions of the world took part in these consultations, which, along with inputs from legal and human rights experts and civil society, fed into the Declaration + 25. The document was adopted unanimously at a two-day experts’ meeting in Bangkok, Thailand in April 2024.

The result is a call to action to governments, multilateral organisations, the private sector, and civil society to protect human rights defenders and their activities and work.

Source: ISHR