National Consultation of Women Human Rights Defenders with UN Special Rapporteur

27 Jun 2019

On 25 – 26 November, 2010, over 300 Human Rights Defenders including the activists working for women’s human rights, LGBT and marginalized communities 

gathered in Kathmandu to discuss issues related to security and protection of defenders, also marking the day of Elimination of all Forms of Violence Against Women.

Given that the commitments to human rights and ending impunity for past and present violations still remains rampant and largely ignored.

Was the ongoing instability in the country, leads to increased violence against women, food insecurity, lack of access to health care, to justice and support in case of 

natural disaster and other difficult situations creating additional risks to human rights defenders.  
Given that human rights defenders( HRDs) are the targets of physical assault, torture, beatings, arbitrary arrest and detention, death threats, harassment and misbehave, 

and restrictions on their freedom of movement, expression and opinion, association and assembly are the common incidents they have to face. 

Given that Women Human Rights Defenders( WHRDs) and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender and intersex defenders( LGBTI) face specific risks and threats 

because of the gender, gender identity and sexual orientation and the rights issues that they work on. 

Whereas the absence of the rule of law has aggravated the security situation of all Nepalis, and more so of human rights defenders that too in particular WHRDs and 

LGBTI defenders means there is no legal and formal support mechanisms designed for HRDs which makes them more vulnerable to the threats they face. 

Given that there exists a Supreme Court directive to the Government of Nepal to develop policy to protect human right defenders working in situation of great risk 

especially women human rights defenders.

Given that the adoption of Domestic Violence Act, 2009 and Declaration of the Prime Minister to end all forms of Gender Based Violence are two recent progressive 

efforts that contribute to ending violence against women. 

Given that NON RECOGNISATION of the work of women human rights defenders leads to further marginalisation and increase security issues faced by women 


Given the imminent need for the creation of specific mechanisms for the protection of HRDs.

We, the Human Rights Defenders of Nepal Call For the following actions to different agencies to bring an end to impunity and promote and protect the rights of Human 

Rights Defenders:
To the State

1.    Focus efforts on the full realization of the principle that women’s rights are human rights as expressed in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, Vienna 

Declaration and Programme of Action and the Beijing Platform for Action (BPFA) and other international human rights instruments. All State action must work on a 

policy that the human rights of women are inalienable, integral and indivisible part of universal human rights. The full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and 

fundamental freedoms by women must be a priority for States; 

2.    Ensure constitutional recognition of the rights to defend human rights. Immediately develop national protection mechanisms for Human Rights Defenders in 

line with decision of Supreme Court on human right defenders, with special consideration on Gender issues
3.    Recognize that women are defenders in their own right and are entitled to the full exercise of the right to defend; 

4.    Address impunity by ensuring accountability for past and present human rights violations through establishing gender sensitive transitional justice 


5.    Ensure and strengthen the capacity and independency of National Human Rights Commission;
6.    Sensitize and raise the awareness of the community and the public on the right to defend and the value of the work of HRDs, in particular, to especially 

acknowledge the legitimacy and and credibility of WHRDs; 

7.    Enact, and train security agencies on the implementation of laws for the protection of victims and survivors and witnesse protection;

8.    Actively lobby for transforming the Declaration on HRDs into a binding instrument;
9.    Advocate to develop a separate protection strategy and mechanism for HRDs in Asia;
10.    Ensure special protection measures for protecting the rights of HRDs especially  WHRDs, LGBTIs,; indigenous minorities; differently abled individuals, 

dalits and marginalized defenderss

11.    Extend official invitation to UNSR on HRDs in order to advice the government on how to best implement the previous recommendations;

12.    Ensure proper implementation of European Guidelines on Human Rights Defenders and European Union  Guidelines on Violence Against Women;
13.    Provide education on women’s rights at all levels, including in the community, to counter patriarchal norms that impede gender equality and women’s full 

enjoyment of their rights; 

14.    Extend the term of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Right(OHCHR)s to stay in Nepal until the political impasse comes to an end.;

To the Human Rights Defenders:

1.    Develop conceptual clarity on the universality and indivisible nature of human rights and the role and responsibility of human rights defenders;
2.    Creation and strengthening of the national, sub regional and regional coalitions and networks to enhance the protection of human rights defenders and 

development of proper policies and strategies in order to ensure the respect of HRDs;
3.    Be accountable to provide information and access to information for community level defenders;
4.    Campaign to lobby the government to send an Official invitation to the SR HRD
5.    Develop Systematic documentation of the cases and develop capacity of community defenders to document violations of human rights;
 To the International Community

1.    Lobby for the official visit of UNSR HRD;

2.    Support the establishment of protection mechanisms for HRDs that includes the strengthening of contacts and networks between defenders;

3.    Follow-up on diplomatic missions to other parts of Nepal with the Government highlighting the situation of local human rights defenders;

4.    Advocate for developing constitutional provisions and subsequent legislation protecting the rights to defend human rights;

5.     In line with continued international support for the protection of defenders and promotion of human rights actively engaged South Asian governments on the 

creation of a regional human rights body with an individual complaints procedure;

6.    Ensure that the European Guidelines on Violence Against Women becomes an integral part of any European Union Funding provided for the government of 


7.    Ensure translation and implementation of the European Guidelines on Human Rights Defenders , European Guidelines on Violence Against Women and 

European EU toolkit on the rights of LGBT persons

To the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of Human Rights Defenders;

1.    To lobby with the Nepal Government and other Missions to extend an invitation for an official visit to Nepal;
2.    To lobby with the different agencies to formulate specific recommendations on recognition and security of Human Rights Defenders for Nepal during the 

UPR review in January 2011