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Research & Advocacy

Research & Advocacy

Front Line Defenders Regional Protection Coordinators conduct research field missions throughout the year, visiting and meeting human rights defenders at risk, following up with grantees and those on whose behalf Front Line Defenders has conducted advocacy, as well as assessing changing risk environments for HRDs.


Field missions allow Front Line Defenders Protection Coordinators to engage with HRDs directly and to observe the environment in which they are working and to identify those most at risk.  For each region - the Americas; Europe & Central Asia; Africa; Middle East & North Africa; and Asia, Front Line Defenders maintains one Protection Coordinator and support staff in the Dublin office.

Meeting wtih Moroccan HRDs
Front Line Defenders MENA PC meeting with Moroccan HRDs in 2015

Information, insights and experience gained on the field missions feed into the work of the entire organisation - including security trainings, digital security training and consultation, and security grants. Field missions expand the network and interconnectivity of HRDs; and facilitate enhanced discussions about secruity and safety strategies and best practices. Among a range of follow up work to the missions, Protection Coordinators prepare briefing papers; Universal Periodic Review submissions; joint statements and reports with other human rights organisations; and multimedia reports for the purpose of advocacy and campaigning.


Front Line Defenders advocates on behalf of individual HRDs with individual governments, regional intergovernmental bodies and international intergovernmental institutions.  Aside from the Urgent Appeal process and the casework of the EU Office in Brussels, Front Line Defenders meets regularly with relevant government ministries when on in-country visits; holds meetings with diplomatic representations in Dublin, London, Brussels and Geneva; and provides regular briefings to the Irish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other governments willing to take action to support HRDs at risk.

Front Line Defenders has initiated an effort to identify and support interested governments in each region to take a stronger position on HRDs in international fora and to actively support HRDs on a regional level among their neighbours. 

“It is important that countries who understand the crucial role played by HRDs for democracy and the rule of law be a strong voice at the international level and work in order to strengthen their protection."
- Mary Lawlor


David Ravelo Crespo Letter from Prison

During all these years of imprisonment, I not only resist the injustice which I'm going through, but also as the days, months and years go by, it brings inexorably  with it the time and  until it reaches oblivion . That's what I refuse, I refuse to be erased with the passage of time.

David Ravelo Crespo


Mission Report: Peru - Mining & Human Rights Defenders