Progress in democratic rights and basic freedoms, especially for human rights defenders remains shaky in Latin America. Rights activists are particularly the target of growing attacks from government and other non-state actors. This article is published by Democracy Digest. Here is an excerpt:
Latin America is one of the world’s most dangerous regions for human rights defenders, accounting for more than three-quarters of all murders of activists in 2020, according to a new report from Freedom House. The COVID-19 pandemic has only made things worse, say the authors of Defending Latin American Human Rights and Democracy Activists.
The report is the first by Freedom House that focuses exclusively on human rights defenders and civil society organizations that promote rights and freedoms, NBC reports. Human rights defenders include community leaders and artists, some of them Indigenous leaders seeking to advance social justice and human rights. It found these defenders are working in increasingly hostile environments, facing intimidation, harassment, physical attacks, and legislation that criminalizes their work.
“Being a journalist, being a women’s rights defender, or being a human rights defender in Latin America is very dangerous,” said Gerardo Berthin, vice president of international programs at Freedom House.
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