Since its foundation in 2009, Libereco – Partnership for Human Rights – has been fighting for respect for human rights. These inalienable and universal rights are enshrined in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Libereco is also committed to the development of an independent, pluralistic civil society. The focus of our work is Belarus and Ukraine.
In both countries we support organisations, initiatives and individuals who are subject to repression because they are politically or civilly involved. At the same time, together with local partners, we try to draw attention to violations and to counter them.
Whether in Belarus or Ukraine, when human rights are restricted, we must not pretend that it is none of our business. If we take responsibility for our basic values, such as freedom, democracy and the rule of law seriously, we have to support those at risk because they share our common understanding of these values.
At the same time, we want to initiate processes to bring both Ukraine and Belarus closer to the democratic and constitutional standards of the European Union.
Education and information
The United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training of 2011 identifies three necessities for anchoring human rights in a society in the long term: education about, through, and for human rights.
A glance at the human rights situation and human rights education in Belarus, Ukraine as well as in Germany shows how diverse these are.
Although there is a fundamental consensus in Germany on the relevance of the issue, the fact remains that the situation in Belarus and Ukraine is very different: here human rights are repeatedly violated and people get excluded. In Belarus, however, there is little awareness in society of the concept of human rights and the values associated with them.
In Ukraine, too, human rights are violated on a daily basis alone by the conflict in the east of the country. The war in Donbas polarises, locates human rights violations in the hands of the opponent, and leaves little room for a critical approach to the observance of human rights within a group. We also want to change this, for example by organising workshops and educational projects.
Humanitarian aid projects
Libereco helps those in need or who have accidentally fallen on hard times. The political crisis in Ukraine has sparked or aggravated a number of humanitarian problems: destroyed houses, internally displaced persons, and the collapse of the entire infrastructure and economy.
In order to help people to overcome the crisis and to develop the country into a stable democracy that respects human and civil rights, we are involved locally.
In addition, we deal with the situation of homeless and marginalised people in Belarus. It is precisely these groups that the Belarusian regime is harassing. We want to stand by them and give them a voice – human rights apply to everyone.