The Sunflower Declaration

A call to action to protect human rights defenders at risk


Photo: ©William Keo / Magnum Photos

"Peace cannot exist without human rights, and human rights cannot exist without those who defend, promote, and protect them"

Photo: © Nobel Prize Outreach / Jo Straube


The Sunflower Declaration is a call to action to protect human rights defenders at risk, with concrete recommendations to governments, multilateral organizations, businesses, cities and universities. It was drafted together with the Nobel Peace Prize laureates 2022; Center for Civil Liberties, Memorial and Viasna (on behalf of Ales Bialiatsksi) and other human rights organizations. Presented at the Nobel Peace Conference HUMAN RIGHTS HEROES 31 August 2023, it is signed and endorsed by a number of Nobel Prize laureates, human rights organisations and individuals.

Ales Bialiatski incarcerated
Photo: © Yulia Darashkevich


The Nobel Peace Prize 2022 was awarded to three human rights defenders: Ales Bialiatski from Belarus, the Russian human rights organisation Memorial and the Ukrainian Center for Civil Liberties. This year also mark the 25th anniversary of the UN Declaration to Protect Human Rights Defenders and the 75th anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights. As we celebrate this important milestone, defenders of human rights are under threat in many parts of the world: Freedom of assembly and freedom of expression are under pressure from authoritarian regimes, and weaponization of the law, digital surveillance and hate campaigns are making the work of human rights defenders difficult.

The people who are defending our common rights, need our support and protection.

Read the Sunflower Declaration

The Sunflower Declaration will leverage the weight of the world’s attention and the Nobel Peace Prize to push for increased respect and support for the work of human rights defenders as a pathway to peace


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