Understanding the Challenges to Human Rights Defenders

10 May 2023
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Human rights violations have grown more prevalent over time and demand ardent attention from members of all spheres of society. Some brave hearts emerge from among us to protect victims of human rights crimes. These advocates work to promote and safeguard civil and political rights, as well as economic, social, and cultural rights. They frequently risk their lives in this process against the offender, who obstructs the building of a world where everyone has equal rights. Defenders are threatened, suppressed, and in many cases, tortured using a variety of instruments, such as policies, agencies, and organizations. States, political parties, and other actors utilize various means to silence these people, allowing horrible acts such as unlawful arrests, extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, intimidation, and so on to go unpunished. It is the responsibility of every relevant stakeholder to establish a welcoming atmosphere for these people so that they can express the people's voice to the appropriate authority. 

A similar situation in Bangladesh has deteriorated over the last decades, and several organizations have reported the issues to attract more attention to them. Several national and international media outlets have reported harassment and arrests of human rights defenders, which has brought the problem into focus. The government has repeatedly failed to protect these people, which contributes to recurrent violations of human rights. This context necessitates that the proposed project tackles the issues in two ways. The project will assess the situations of the human rights defenders in the country to present the actual and complete scenario, the struggles they have to endure, and the barriers they have to face. Therefore, by learning about the challenges that human rights advocates face in Bangladesh, this project can help shape policies and strategies to protect them.