Total attacks on defenders tracked in the portal

New body of research clarifies why & how businesses should support civic freedoms & human rights defenders


Human rights defenders and civic freedoms essential for profitable business, say major companies

The statement is the first of its kind, with supporters including Unilever, adidas, Primark, ABN AMRO, Anglo American, Leber Jeweler, Domini and the Investors Alliance on Human Rights, and stresses that when human rights defenders are under attack, so is sustainable and profitable business. Governments and investors everywhere should take notice today as a group of major brands call for protecting human rights defenders and civic freedoms, which are under attack across the world.


Database of attacks on defenders working on businesses-related human rights abuses

Search our database of attacks below, find out about the design and the methodology here or share your case!

Explore incidents by related sector or company, country or attack type

The size of the circles indicate the number incidents. Zoom in for more detail and click the circles for information

Key findings

3.2 billion people live in constrained civic space and civic freedoms

From our partners: CIVICUS Monitor shows that civil society is under serious attack in 111 out of 196 countries. This is up from 109 countries at our last update in March 2018. 

Access CIVICUS Monitor

Situation of defenders is particularly vulnerable

Resource Centre's findings: Over 1300 attacks on defenders working on businesses-related human rights abuses took place from 2015-2108. Find out who is getting attacked, by whom and why - and what can be done for the situation to improve.

Key findings

News & developments

Find out more about the latest news and the most important actions and ideas at the intersection of business, civic freedoms and the work of human rights defenders here and through our bulletin. Archive of highlighted items available here

Subscribe to our bulletin   January 2018 Bulletin

Interview with Guatemalan Maya Ch'orti Indigenous authority: 'We need to be consulted directly, not through a mayor or community development council'

In the second part of 2018, UN human rights experts have raised alarm over the increase in killings, attacks and other acts of intimidation against human rights defenders in Guatemala. We sat down with a human rights defender from Guatemala, Domingo Vázquez Ramírez, a Maya Ch'orti indigenous authority, who talked to us about the difficulties indigenous defenders encounter when faced with entry of development projects, including renewable energy companies.


Canada: Indigenous activists arrested by police for blocking construction of Coastal Gaslink pipeline

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police arrested 14 indigenous activists protecting a proposed natural gap pipeline that would run through the traditional territory of B.C.'s Wet’suwet’en First Nation. TransCanada says it signed agreements with all First Nations, but hereditary chiefs said that under Wet'suwet'en law the band councils don't have authority or jurisdiction over what happens in the nation's traditional territory and have "condemn[ed] the RCMP’s use of intimidation, harassment, and ongoing threats of forceful intervention and removal of the Wet’suwet’en land defenders from Wet’suwet’en unceded territory." 


Front Line Defenders' new global analysis shows 77% of attacks connected to defense of land, environment & indigenous rights

In 2018, 321 defenders in 27 countries were targeted and killed for their work – the highest number ever on record – according to data collected by Front Line Defenders. More than three-quarters of these, 77% of the total number of activists killed, were defending land, environmental or indigenous peoples’ rights, often in the context of extractive industries and state-aligned mega-projects.