Human Rights Council 49th Session.
Item 3: Interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur
on the situation of human rights defenders
Statement delivered by Ambassador Tine Mørch Smith, Permanent Representative of Norway on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries
(Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden)
Check against delivery
11 March 2022
I have the honour of speaking on behalf of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Sweden and Norway.
We welcome the Special Rapporteur to the Human Rights Council. We thank the Special Rapporteur for bringing to our attention the interlinkages between human rights and corruption, and the role of human rights defenders in combatting it.
The report again proves the relevance of the mandate in bringing attention to the work of human rights defenders, including women human rights defenders, and the challenges they face. We call on all states to engage constructively with the Special Rapporteur, including on individual cases.
We also encourage all states to participate in the negotiations on the resolution on human rights defenders that Norway has presented. The resolution addresses the protection needs of human rights defenders operating in conflict and post-conflict situations.
Madame Special Rapporteur,
We note the successes recounted in the report, illustrating the positive contribution of human rights defenders. Nevertheless, we are also deeply concerned for the instances of threats and attacks against human rights defenders who investigate and speak out about corruption. Reprisals against those who fight corruption can only undermine trust and confidence in public institutions. How can this Council best support human rights defenders fighting corruption, including ensuring better protection against threats and attacks?