Values Fund to Support Human Rights Work in European Union

UN Demands Protection of Human Rights Defenders
UN Demands Protection of Human Rights Defenders

The UN Human Rights Regional Office for Europe welcomes the adoption Thursday by the European Parliament of a resolution calling for the establishment of a “Values Fund” or “Values Instrument” to support independent civil society organisations undertaking human rights work in countries within the European Union (EU).

“We welcome the adoption of this resolution. Indeed, the EU should fund human rights civil society organisations within the EU to the same extent that it supports such organisations outside the EU,” said Birgit Van Hout, the UN Human Rights Office’s Regional Representative for Europe.

Van Hout called for the proposal to be seen as an important step in the larger project of better anchoring human rights in the next European Multi-Annual Financial Framework, post-2020.

The European Union is currently discussing all aspects of its financial frameworks and funding for the period post-2020.

In this regard, the UN Human Rights Regional Office for Europe recently set out a vision for deepened and enriched engagement of the EU budget with human rights.

“The Values Instrument is crucial, but it is only one aspect of European Union funding and human rights. We urge a comprehensive approach,” Van Hout said.

Photo courtesy: OHCHR

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Rakesh Raman