Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The legal obstacles to the work and life of Human Rights Defenders : alternative approaches and recommendations for reform
Author: Koula, Aikaterini Christina
ISNI:       0000 0004 9348 9158
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2020
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Full text unavailable from EThOS. Thesis embargoed until 04 Jun 2023
Access from Institution:
The thesis is concerned with the legal obstacles to the life of individuals who fight for the realisation of human rights and are known as Human Rights Defenders (HRDs). It argues that as a consequence of their struggle for human rights and justice, HRDs face numerous obstacles in their work, which affect their human rights activity and may entail serious consequences for human rights in general. In particular, the thesis identifies three main legal obstacles; the lack of a clear definition, the criminalisation of HRDs and impunity for crimes committed against defenders, placing particular emphasis on the failure of international human rights law to provide efficient protection to HRDs. On this basis, it also considers whether international refugee law can act as an alternative way of protection, as a HRD may meet the requirements of the term ‘refugee’. It, however, rejects the idea, emphasising the need of a protection system for HRDs within the state of origin, given the desire of HRDs to remain in their home countries, as well as the crisis of refugee and asylum law. It therefore makes recommendations that could respond to each of the identified obstacles, while drawing upon recommendations for strengthening the implementation of human rights in general, also proposes alternatives, not strictly related to international human rights law as such, that could contribute to the protection of HRDs and the implementation of human rights in general.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available