Human Rights Defender Video Series [2013]


Distilled Ideas was commissioned by Front Line Defenders and the Indian news organisation Tehelka to create a series of video interviews with a few of the inspirational human rights defenders who were in Dublin for the 7th Front Line Defenders Dublin Platform.


Raed Fares [Syria]

Raed Fares runs a media centre in north-west Syria in the town of Kafranbel, a rebel stronghold that has been called the creative centre of the revolt against President Bashar al Assad. He talks about the ways in which they are trying to counter the violence by the regime.


Elena Milashina [Russia]

Elena Milashina’s fight for freedom of speech and free media has led her to take on the Russian state under President Vladimir Putin. Her hard-hitting account of state-sponsored terrorism and investigative journalism has many a time put her life at risk. Despite the dangers involved and the countless colleagues and friends she has lost, her quest for seeking the truth continues. As Milashina puts it, “Russia is on the list of countries where activists and journalists are not at all protected. Every time one of my colleagues is murdered or attacked, I feel anger and rage. And you know, that can be a stronger motivation than fear.”


Dongkyun Kang [South Korea]

The military bases being set up by the USA across Asia has met with resistance from the residents of a small South Korean village Gangjeong. Dongkyun Kang, a member of the protest movement, describes why people are protesting the naval base in the nearby Jeju islands for fear of environmental damage. He also talks about how the naval base has divided the community and led to the violation of human rights.


About the Dublin Platform:

(Dublin Castle, 9 to 11 October 2013)

The Dublin Platform is one of the biggest gatherings of human rights defenders in the world. This year there will be over 140 human rights defenders from more than 90 countries, each one is at risk to a greater or lesser extent. Every issue on the international news agenda will be represented at the Dublin Platform and each of the participants in the Dublin Platform has a story of courage to tell.

Human rights defenders are not victims, they are strong people who put their lives on the line to defend the rights of others. Among the 140 participants are human rights defenders from Egypt Palestine and Bahrain, LGBT defenders from Russia and pro-democracy campaigners from Zimbabwe and India. If you would like to see some background information on the Dublin Platform you can find it here.

Front Line Defenders is an Ireland-based international organisation and is an Irish success story. Over the last 11 years since it was founded by Mary Lawlor, it has established an international reputation for its ability to respond to crisis in a fast and effective manner. Front Line Defenders was one of the pioneers in developing digital security which will be one of the themes for this year’s Dublin Platform.

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