Developing Countries: Human Rights

Department for International Development written question – answered on 24th October 2019.

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Photo of Chris Law Chris Law Shadow SNP Spokesperson (International Development)

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to the Answer of 11 July 2019 to Question 272858 on Developing Countries: Human Rights, what plans he has to raise awareness of the Government document entitled, UK support for human rights defenders, to (a) his Department's staff and (b) human rights defenders.

Photo of Andrew Stephenson Andrew Stephenson Assistant Whip, Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

FCO and DFID have conducted a number of awareness raising activities for the ‘UK Support for Human Rights Defenders’ document both before and after its publication.

During its development a selected number of overseas diplomatic posts, Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and human rights defenders were consulted. Following its publication and announcement at the Global Conference for Media Freedom in July, the document has been made available on GOV.UK in all six UN languages. The document has been sent to all posts in the UK diplomatic network encouraging them to use it in the course of their work with human rights defenders as well as to relevant policy staff in DFID headquarters.

The document has also been circulated on external websites such as Human Rights Watch, Global Witness, and the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre. The FCO and DFID will continue their outreach with human rights networks, NGOs and human rights defenders. Lord Ahmad has also written to Michelle Bachelet (UN High Commissioner for Human Rights) to inform her of the document.

The FCO and DFID will continue to look for opportunities to further promote and publicise the document including Human Rights Defenders Day on 9 December and Human Rights Day on 10 December.

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