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Across the globe human rights defenders face various forms of persecution in their everyday struggle for human rights

In Honduras an anonymous tip off alerts members of Cofadeh that their Director Bertha Oliva, and other prominent human rights defenders, are on a death list.

In Armenia Mr Arshaluys Hakobyan of the Helsinki Association is taken into custody and beaten.

In Thailand Ms Angkhana Neelaphaijit who is the chairperson of the Working Group on Justice and Peace (WGJP) and wife of the missing human rights lawyer, Somchai Neelaphaijit, who disappeared on 12 March 2004 in Bangkok, is subjected to an ongoing campaign of harassment and intimidation.

These few cases are typical of the thousands of human rights defenders who dedicate their lives and risk their personal security in defence of the rights of others.

Your support will help them to create more just and equal societies for all. These are the people with the power to change the world.

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- Thompson Ade Bayor, lawyer and human rights defender, Liberia

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Urgent Cases

Israel/OPT – Judicial harassment of human rights defender Awni Abu Shamsiyyaposted on: 2016/02/05

On 3 February 2016, human rights defender Mr Awni Abu Shamsiyya, son of human rights defender Mr Emad Abu Shamsiyya, was arrested alongside youth activist Mr Nizar Silhab Al-tamimi.

Nigeria - Judicial harassment of human rights defender Jelili Atikuposted on: 2016/02/05

On 1 February 2016, the Magistrate's Court of Ejigbo initiated judicial proceedings against human rights defender and artist Mr Jelili Atiku and adjourned his trial to 7 March 2016.

Philippines – Extrajudicial killing of human rights defender Teresita Navacillaposted on: 2016/02/05

On 30 January 2016, three days after after being shot, human rights defender Ms Teresita Navacilla died in a hospital in Tagum City, in the Southern Mindanao region of the Philippines. Her assailants have not been identified yet.

Teresita Navacilla was a member of Save Pantukan Movement, a network of indigenous peoples from the Pantukan region in the Compostela Valley province fighting for the right to their ancestral lands, advocating for more stringent environmental protection in the country and opposing large-scale open pit mining by foreign corporations in Southern Mindanao.

Recently, the human rights defender spoke out against the launching of the King-king mining project in Pantukan. Environmental groups have warned that the project will adversely effect the livelihood and health of communities in the region, and threaten its biodiversity and marine and coastal ecosystems.

Thailand – Judicial harassment of human rights defender Sirikan Charoensiri posted on: 2016/02/05

On 2 February 2016, human rights defender Ms Sirikan Charoensiri received a summons ordering her to report to Chanasongkram Police Station in Bangkok on 9 February 2016.

Kazakhstan – Human rights defender Ermek Narymbaev continues hunger strike in protest against his prison sentence posted on: 2016/02/05

On 5 February 2016, detained human rights defender Mr Ermek Narymbaev began his 19th day on hunger strike in protest against his conviction on 22 January 2016.

Kenya: Death threats against David Calleb Otieno and fellow human rights defenders from the Burundi Solidarity Groupposted on: 2016/02/04

On 2 February 2016, human rights defenders Messrs David Calleb Otieno, Wilfred Olal and Ferdinand Manirerekana received death threats via text messages to their mobile phones.

Egypt: Travel ban imposed on prominent lawyer and human rights defender Gamal Eidposted on: 2016/02/04

On 4 February 2016, Egyptian security at Cairo International Airport prevented human rights defender Mr Gamal Eid from travelling to Athens, Greece, on a business trip.

Russian Federation – Serious concerns over proposed amendments to the law on Public Monitoring Commissions posted on: 2016/02/03

On 26 January 2016, the lower chamber of Russia's Parliament adopted amendments to detention regulations laws. If passed, the draft amendments will put an end to the independent and effective monitoring of places of detention by human rights defenders.

Egypt: Harassment and intimidation of cartoonist Islam Gawishposted on: 2016/02/01

On 31 January 2016, human rights defender and cartoonist Mr Islam Gawish was arrested at his workplace and detained overnight by police.

Honduras – Killing of LGTBI rights defender Paola Barrazaposted on: 2016/01/29

On 24 January 2016, human rights defender Ms Paola Barraza was assassinated by unknown attackers in front of her house in the neighbourhood of Lempira, in Comayaguela.

Morocco – Human rights defender and prominent journalist Ali Anouzla charged for commenting on the dispute in Western Saharaposted on: 2016/01/29

On 21 January 2016, human rights defender and journalist Mr Ali Anouzla was charged at the Tribunal of First Instance of Rabat with “undermining national territorial integrity”.

Venezuela - Assassination of human rights lawyer Héctor Sánchez Losadaposted on: 2016/01/27

On 22 January 2016, two unidentified gunmen shot and killed human rights lawyer Mr Héctor Sánchez Losada in the city of Maturín, in the state of Monagas.

Cameroon - Judicial harassment against human rights defender Nasako Besingi posted on: 2016/01/27

On 21 January 2016, the Court of First Instance of Mundemba sentenced environmental rights defender Mr Nasako Besingi to either pay a fine of 344,400 CFA Francs (approximately €524) or serve one year imprisonment.

Thailand – Charging and ill-treatment of student human rights defendersposted on: 2016/01/26

On 13 January 2016, the Bangkok Military Court issued arrest warrants against student human rights defenders Sirawit Serithiwat, Chonthicha Jaeung-Rew, Chanoknan Ruamsap, Korakot Saengyenpan and Abhisit Sapnaphapan.

Pakistan – Arrest of human rights defender Saeed Balochposted on: 2016/01/22

On 16 January 2016, human rights defender Mr Saeed Baloch was arrested by Pakistani special forces in Karachi and detained at an unknown location. No official charges have as of yet been brought against him.

Egypt: Extended detention of human rights defender and health activist Dr Taher Mokhtar posted on: 2016/01/21

On 17 January 2016, the Abdeen prosecution in central Cairo renewed the detention of human rights defender Dr Taher Mokhtar for 15 days pending investigation on charges of “possession of publications that call for the overthrow of the regime”.

Mozambique: Intimidation and smear campaign against human rights defenders Jeremias Vunjanhe and Vicente Adrianoposted on: 2016/01/15

On 11 January 2016, human rights defenders Mr Jeremias Vunjanhe and Mr Vicente Adriano were subjected to harassment and intimidation whilst participating in community consultations connected to a large-scale agribusiness project in Northern Mozambique.

DRC: Death threats against human rights journalists Godeliève Uwimana and Rozenn Kalafuloposted on: 2016/01/14

On 7 January 2016, two human rights defenders were subjected to death threats while on a journalistic assignment at the border between Goma, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Gisenyi, in Rwanda.

Egypt: Travel ban against human rights defender and poet Omar Hazek posted on: 2016/01/14

On 14 January 2016, Egyptian security at Cairo International Airport banned human rights defender Mr Omar Hazek from travelling to Amsterdam, Netherlands, to receive an award on freedom of expression from the Dutch chapter of PEN International.

Thailand – Thai court confiscates passport and imposes travel ban on human rights defender Andy Hall posted on: 2016/01/13

On 13 January 2016, the Bangkok South Criminal Court confiscated the passport of British human rights defender Mr Andy Hall and imposed a travel ban on him.

Cambodia – Prime Minister Hun Sen threatens legal action against human rights defender Vorn Paoposted on: 2016/01/13

On 5 January 2016, Prime Minister Hun Sen issued a threat of legal action against human rights defender Mr Vorn Pao while giving a speech at the inauguration of the Pram Makara overpass in Phnom Penh.

Egypt: Human rights defender Ahmed Abd Alla at risk of detention posted on: 2016/01/12

On 9 January 2016, three security agents dressed in civilian clothes and claiming to be affiliated with the police raided a coffee shop in the Agouza suburb of the Giza governerate and questioned the staff about human rights defender Mr Ahmed Abd Allah.

China – Charging of human rights defenders following months of incommunicado detentionposted on: 2016/01/12

On 11 and 12 January 2016, the families of five human rights lawyers and a legal assistant received official notice that their family members had been formally charged. All six individuals had been held in secret detention for six months.

China – Detention of human rights lawyer Wang Qiushiposted on: 2016/01/12

On 12 January 2016, human rights lawyer Mr Wang Qiushi was reportedly placed under residential surveillance by police in Beijing. On 9 January 2016, the human rights lawyer disappeared after being summoned by police in the capital.

Wang Qiushi is a Heilongjiang-based human rights lawyer who has taken on a number of so-called 'politically sensitive' cases in the past number of years. In March and April 2015, he represented women's rights activist Ms Wei Tingting, who was one of five feminists arrested for planning anti-sexual harassment demonstrations to mark International Women's Day on 8 March. Since taking on the case of fellow human rights lawyer Wang Quanzhang, who has been held in detention since 10 July 2015, Wang Qiushi has been denied permission to meet with his client, who is reportedly being held in Hexi District Detention Centre in Tianjin.

Mexico - Arbitrary detention of human rights defender Nestora Salgado Garcíaposted on: 2016/01/12

On 6 January 2016, the First Criminal Chamber of the Superior Tribunal of Justice of Guerrero rejected the appeal presented by the defence lawyers of Ms Nestora Salgado García requesting her immediate release.

DRC: Threats against human rights defender Oscar Rashidi Akidaposted on: 2016/01/11

On 5 January 2016, human rights defender Mr Oscar Rashidi Akida received two threatening phone calls to his mobile phone number.

Tunisia: Suspension of the activities of the LGBT rights association Shamsposted on: 2016/01/08

On 4 January 2016, the Tunisian Court of First Instance ordered the suspension of the activities of the LGBT rights association Shams for 30 days.

Pakistan – Shooting of transgender human rights defender Adnanposted on: 2016/01/07

On 5 January 2015, the transgender human rights defender Adnan (also known as Adnany), was shot and critically wounded near the Pir Zakori Bridge in the city of Peshawar.

Peru: Assassination of human rights defender and campesino leader Hitler Ananias Gonzales Rojasposted on: 2016/01/05

On 28 December 2015, four unidentified gunmen shot and killed human rights defender Mr Hitler Ananias Gonzales Rojas in the province of Celendin, Cajamarca region.