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7 Jun 2022

Earth Rights

Asia: EarthRights launches security toolkit for land & environmental defenders in Greater Mekong


EarthRights developed this toolkit to build awareness, understanding, and capacity on security and protection for individuals, communities, and organizations working to defend their communities, land, and environment in the Greater Mekong Subregion. It’s designed to support facilitators delivering security and protection training to local organizations and communities. The toolkit provides information and guidance necessary to provide training relevant and specific to the region... [The] toolkit is available both as downloadable manuals and interactive online experiences in English and Thai.


The work of ERDs often involves standing up against powerful actors such as multinational corporations, big businesses, government agencies and security services... Viewing the work of ERDs as an obstacle to securing their own vested interests, these actors use multiple ways to silence and target ERDs, so harmful development projects can continue unchallenged.

While there is international recognition of the work of ERDs and some limited protection mechanisms are in place, in practice many ERDs find themselves unable to exercise their rights and are targeted and threatened for carrying out their legitimate human rights work... In the Greater Mekong Subregion, there is often a lack of effective protection from the government or local law enforcement... Many countries across the region lack independent judiciaries and effective and accountable legal systems...

ERDs often expose human rights violations resulting from the construction of mega-infrastructure projects such as large dams, oil and gas pipelines, ports, highways, railways and the development of mines and agribusinesses...