GENEVA: For five days, the Rafto Prize Laureates were gathered to share experiences on shrinking political space, the increasing use of threats and hate speech against human rights defenders and the growing trend of governments using legal and administratative procedures to target civil society.
On June 25th-28th 2019 Rafto laureates from three decades and five continents gathered in Geneva.
"The Rafto laureates are a diverse group of human rights defenders working in very different contexts, but many of the challenges they face are the same", says Jostein Hole Kobbeltvedt, Executive Director of the Rafto Foundation.
The forum was also an opportunity to meet with international non-governmental organisations and UN representatives. The Norwegian mission to the UN also hosted a reception honouring the Rafto laureates.
"At a time when human rights are being challenged both at the national and the international level, gatherings like this shows the importance building strong networks and communities across borders, as well as generations, of human rights defenders", says Hole Kobbeltvedt.
This year´s Rafto laureates forum gathered laureates from Poland, Kashmir, Mexico, Nigeria, China, DR Congo, Hungary, India, Uganda, Estonia, United States, Iran, and Western Sahara.
The Rafto Prize laureates
The Rafto Prize is awarded annually to individuals or organizations that have distinguished themselves in their work for human rights and democracy. Learn more about our laureates throught 30 years and why they received the Rafto Prize.