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The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights turns 35!

The 73rd session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (The Commission) marked 35 years of the Commission’s commitment to the protection and promotion of human rights in Africa. This August body is at the forefront of championing and setting human rights norms and standards in Africa and I congratulate it upon this milestone. Since 2009, AfricanDefenders and DefendDefenders have closely engaged with the Commission, and have excelled on concrete outcomes towards creating an enabling operating environment for human rights defenders (HRDs) across the continent. We can refer to few examples of resolutions and instruments developed and adopted by the Commission to advise state parties to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on setting standards and best practices in their countries.

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It is with utter shock and distress that DefendDefenders and AfricanDefenders have learned of the assassination of prominent African human rights defender and advocate , Thulani Maseko, who was shot dead  at his home in Luyengo, Mbabane, on 21 January 2023.  DefendDefenders and AfricanDefenders believe that this heinous crime was planned, and that Mr. Maseko was targeted because of his persistent advocacy for accountability and greater civic space for political and civil society organisations in Eswatini.

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Through the Haze of Teargas, A Win for Kenyan Human Rights Defenders

Business must be booming for teargas suppliers in Africa. Many of the continent’s law enforcement agencies have shown a fondness for excessive force, including through the use of less-than-lethal crowd control tactics, such as teargas. Those on the receiving end are often citizens active and brave enough to exercise their right to protest in defense of their human rights, and the rights of others.

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