Remarks at a Third Committee Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur for Human Rights Defenders

S. Douglas Bunch
U.S. Public Delegate
New York, New York
October 13, 2022


The United States thanks the Special Rapporteur for her work to elevate the situation of human rights defenders. We are appalled by the Special Rapporteur’s findings of governments misusing national security laws to clamp down on human rights defenders working on issues related to migration.

In particular, the unique issues faced by women human rights defenders outlined in the report and the increased use of online threats, which often materialize into attacks offline, are sobering. Reports of death threats, abductions, torture, sexual assault, killings, and the use of spurious charges against defenders who provide support to migrants are exceptionally concerning.

We echo the Special Rapporteur’s call to Member States to desist from targeting human rights defenders working on issues related to migration, refugees, and asylum-seekers.

Our question: How can member states who champion the work of human rights defenders work multilaterally to counter the threats identified in your report?