Right Livelihood delivering a statement at the 49th session of the UN Human Rights Council.

Right Livelihood and Laureates highlight Russia, crackdown on civil society and Western Sahara at UN Human Rights Council

News 29.03.2022

Russia’s human rights record, disturbing global trends threatening civil society and the issue of Western Sahara were among the issues Right Livelihood and Laureates drew attention to during the 49th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva over the past month.

Here’s a summary of statements we made together with Laureates:

Russia’s alarming human rights record

The United Nations should monitor human rights violations by Russia and suspend the country’s membership on the UN Human Rights Council, we said, noting the Russian government’s increasing repression against its own people and abroad.

Systematic eradication of civil society in Belarus

The international community must support civil society in Belarus by ensuring justice and accountability after the country has systematically eradicated all human rights organisations over the past year, we told the Council together with Laureate organisation Viasna.

Imprisonment of civil society activists amidst growing pressures

Civil society activists face imprisonment in many countries as the crackdown on civic space continues to intensify, we warned. In particular, we highlighted the cases of 2018 Laureates Mohammed al-Qahtani and Waleed Abu al-Khair in Saudi Arabia, 2020 Laureate Nasrin Sotoudeh in Iran and seven members of 2020 Laureate organisation Human Rights Center “Viasna” in Belarus who are all currently behind bars.

Dire human rights situation in Western Sahara

United Nations observers should be sent to Western Sahara to monitor the ever-worsening human rights situation, we said together with the Sahrawi Organ Against the Moroccan Occupation (ISACOM).

The impact of illegal mining on Indigenous peoples in Brazil

Illegal mining is posing a serious threat to the lives, well-being and environment of indigenous peoples in Brazil, we said in a joint statement with Laureate organisation Survival, urging the country to protect indigenous territories from such harmful practices.

Indigenous peoples in Nicaragua under threat by armed settlers

Indigenous and Afro-descendant peoples in Nicaragua are experiencing alarming levels of land grabs and violent attacks by illegal armed settlers, we said. We called on the UN Human Rights Council to ensure their protection.

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