Justice and Human Rights - Peace Direct

Justice and Human Rights

Igor Rugwiza

Before conflict erupts, human rights abuses are often the first early warning signs that a situation is descending into chaos.

In countries emerging from violence, official channels for resolving disputes can be slow, expensive and corrupt leaving people to take justice into their own hands. But something can be done about this and local people are proving it.

We support local activists to monitor and report human rights abuses at the onset of violence so that widespread violence can be prevented. They speak out against human rights abuses, secure the release of people wrongly arrested, and take action to stop local conflicts escalating. This means the people they live and work amongst do not have to live in fear of a knock at the door.

In countries emerging from violence, official channels for defending justice and human rights, and resolving disputes can be slow, expensive and corrupt. Often, people are left to take justice into their own hands.

We support local activists to provide an alternative: monitoring and reporting human rights abuses at the onset of unrest so that widespread violence can be prevented.

They speak out against human rights abuses, secure the release of people wrongly arrested, and take action to stop local conflicts escalating.

This means the people they live and work amongst do not have to live in fear of a knock at the door. You can help more people live without fear. 

In Pakistan…

We support local peacebuilders to stand up for women’s rights in an area where violence against women is endemic and their rights rarely acknowledged.

In Zimbabwe…

We support our partner to address a culture of violence by training traditional leaders and engaging the police in conflict.

In DR Congo…

In war-torn South Kivu, we support our partner to run a network of village-level courts that offer free access to justice for the local population.

 

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Voices from the ground: standing up for human rights in Burundi

“My name is Bukeyezena*, I am 52 years old and I work as the contact person for violence monitoring in one of the localities of Makamba. Thanks to the training I received from the network, I look forward to my contribution to conflict resolution in my community.

In the event of an incident, I alert the authorities and other high-level contacts that may be able to have an influence over the outcome for the victim. A member of a village in Makamba province was arrested and put in the prison in April 2018 by a Judicial Police Officer. He was arrested by the Imbonerakure because of his political affiliation with the opposition party.

Following my intervention, he was released the next day. I pleaded on his behalf by explaining the irregularities of his arrest. It is thanks to the training and technical advice from the network around how to adapt and respond to the reality on the ground that I was able to do this.”

*Name changed for security reasons