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© Amnesty International (with courtesy of Sen. Limas office)

Defending Women - Defending Rights

A day before the informal ‘Gymnich’ meeting of EU foreign affairs ministers in Vienna, women human rights defenders from El Salvador, Poland, Indonesia, Kenya, Austria, Syria and Russia will meet EU representatives to demand greater protection and support for their work amid increasing attacks on fellow activists.

The panel discussions explored the challenges faced by Women Human Rights Defenders and how to strengthen protection mechanisms. Women Human Right Defenders make a strong contribution to society, but there is insufficient awareness of the challenges they face and there is a need for policy makers to do more for their protection, in practice, not only on paper.

Women Human Rights Defenders

Today human rights defenders across the globe face unprecedented levels of persecution, intimidation, violence and even killings. Women Human Rights Defenders face even more discrimination and attacks than other Human Rights Defenders because of their gender and because they often work on issues related to women’s rights and sexuality.

Despite these threats, many of these women are fearless. They make a difference and their determination to fight for human rights is inspiring.

AMNESTY WomenHumanRightsDefenders c Amnesty International Österreich-Christoph Liebentritt

From Right to Left: Majdoleen Hassan, Kania Mamonto, Wangui Kimari, Guadalupe Merengo, Annemarie Schlack, Marty Huber, Maria Teresa Rivera, Covadonga del la Campa Alonso, Evdokia Romanova

Women everywhere are claiming rights, fighting injustice. Their courage is making a positive difference in the world. It is our duty to protect them. EU foreign ministers at #Gymnich must #StandWithDefenders.

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WHRD Seminar Vienna2018-25 | © Christoph Liebentritt/Amnesty International Austria Evdokia Romanova

I believe that everybody has the right to express themselves and be with the person they love.

DSC 8827 Annemarie Schlack, Director Amnesty International Austria

EU Foreign Ministers must recognize, support and protect brave women. This might be the end of our event, but this is just the beginning: Join our movement and become a Women Human Rights Defender now!

WHRD Seminar Vienna 2018-6 | © Christoph Liebentritt/Amnesty International Austria Marty Huber, Founder Queerbase Austria

To nurture a place where people could be or become the person they are is what makes us rise and stand up for Women Human Rights Defenders.

WHRD Seminar Vienna 2018-10 | © Christoph Liebentritt/Amnesty International Austria Maria Teresa Rivera, Woman Human Rights Defender, El Salvador/Sweden

We are women. We are courageous, we are strong. We are fighters. We can't be silenced. Women have a right to their own bodies.

WHRD Seminar Vienna2018-15 | © Christoph Liebentritt/Amnesty International Austria Guadalupe Merengo, Deputy Program Director, Human Rights Defenders

A day before the informal ‘Gymnich’ meeting of EU foreign affairs ministers in Vienna, women human rights defenders from El Salvador, Poland, Indonesia, Kenya, Austria, Syria and Russia will meet EU representatives to demand greater protection and support for their work amid increasing attacks on fellow activists.

Panel Discussion: Specific contexts and obstacles faced by WHRD
WHRD Seminar Vienna 2018-11 | © Christoph Liebentritt/Amnesty International Austria Wangui Kimari, Woman Human Rights Defender, Kenia

I want Kenia to be known for the courageous, resilient and determined efforts of young people coming together to stand up for another world. For dignity, for equality and for justice

WHRD Seminar Vienna2018-18 | © Christoph Liebentritt/Amnesty International Austria Majdoleen al Hassan, Human Rights Lawyer, Syria/Austria

Women not only in Syria but around the world should make clear what is happening to women in Syria.

Panel discussion: Protection and Empowerment