Challenges and Support for Human Rights Defenders in Times of Pandemic



Last year, in every region, human rights defenders have faced increased intimidation and attacks, while civic space has continued to erode in many parts of the world. Risks have worsened for human rights defenders as the COVID-19 pandemic broke into the daily lives of communities and determined the political agenda at the national and international levels. In this context, has continued to offer life-saving support to hundreds of human rights defenders, their families, and their communities, and enabled thousands of them to continue their human rights work with a higher level of security.

In this webinar, Laura Battistin, Head of Secretariat of, will explore the challenges faced by human rights defenders on a daily basis and some of the support provided by international organisations, including partners of 

The event is co-organized by the Working Group on Human Rights and Sustainable Development of the Global Forum for Law, Justice and Development and the Policy Research Group on a Human Rights Based Approach to Development.


Head of Secretariat of, the EU Human Rights Defenders mechanism

It was established in 2015 to protect human rights defenders at high risk and facing the most difficult situations worldwide. Laura has twelve years of experience working with international organisations in the field of human rights and labour rights. For seven years she worked in China, where she collaborated with human rights defenders and local NGOs on several programmes.


Event Type: Webinar

Date: May 5, 2021

Venue/Location: Virtual