GUATEMALA - INTENSIFICATION OF ATTACKS AND KILLINGS's partners are deeply concerned about the recent killings of human rights defenders in Guatemala. In the last weeks:

  • Sulma Alegria Robles (also known as Evelyn / Kelvin Josué Alegría Robles), transgender woman, LGBTIQ rights defender and member of NGO Oasis, was found dead at home with clear indications of torture and serious physical violence.
  • Jeremy Abraham Barrios Lima, assistant at the Centro de Acción Legal-Ambiental y Social de Guatemala (CALAS) was shot dead on the 12 of November, reportedly in link with sensitive information he collected against powerful extractive companies as well as the prosecution launched against the president and the entire cabinet.
  • The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders has released an alert on the intensification of attacks against defenders in Guatemala. At least 14 murders and 7 murder attempts have been reported so far this year.

In the last twelve months, has supported Human Rights Defenders from Guatemala through:


- Six emergency grants to implement individual security measures, receive legal support and urgently relocate away from danger;


- Two grants to fund the advocacy activities of local human rights organisations;

- At least six trainings or capacity-building initiatives for Guatemalan defenders. has conducted an advocacy mission and a trial observation in the country, and carries out monitoring and advocacy activities in the field on an ongoing basis, with a strong focus on land and environmental defenders and indigenous peoples.



During the last month, partners have reported about the arbitrary detentions and judicial harassment against land rights defenders in Kenya:


  • Eight members of the network organisation Building Africa, namely Charles Mwanzia, Ramadhan Mathenge Kamosu, Justus Munyao,Fabian Ngure, Julius Kimondio, Frank Mbomani, Ambrose Hemed, Msafiri Mkillo, as well as two witnesses to a beneficiary of the organisation’s services, Julius Masuma and Peter Kithome, were arrested while attending a public meeting about land grabbing and corruption in the city of Taveta, in Taita Taveta County of Kenya. They were charged by the Taveta Court the day after with “participation in an unlawful assembly”, in breach of Section 79 of the Penal Code.


During the last 12 months, has allocated emergency relocation grants and family and legal support to at least 8 human rights defenders from Kenya and provided training to at least 75 Kenyan human rights defenders. has also recently conducted a fact-finding mission to Kenya, in link with the upcoming elections, the high levels of police violence and repeated attempts to criminalise human rights defenders, especially during peaceful demonstrations and using counter-terrorism actions.




In December 2016, has alerted about the police raid at the offices of Bersih 2.0, the Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections, and arbitrary arrest of nine human rights defenders in Malaysia:


  • Police officers prevented Bersih 2.0 staff from leaving the office and stopped lawyers from entering the premises. They arrested two staff members, Maria Chin Abdullah and Mandeep Singh and also confiscated laptops, phones, and bank and payroll statements from the office. 
  • On the same day, in separate incidents in Petaling Jaya and Kuala Lumpur, police took into custody seven other Bersih 5 rally supporters: S. Arutchelvan, Ronnie Liu, Andy Wong, Lee Khai Ming, Anthony Loke, Mhamad Luqman Nul Haqim and Anis Syafiqah. Bersih 5 is a peaceful democratic protest calling for a fairer electoral system in the country. 


In 2016, has provided assistance for urgent legal support to a Human Rights Defender in Malaysia.




More than 18 emergency grants allocated to human rights defenders at risk






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