Who Will Defend the Defenders?

Open Society Foundations Isidro Baldenegro sitting in a room © Pablo Aneli/AP
On January 15, Isidro Baldenegro, a prominent environmental leader, was shot and killed in his home state of Chihuahua, Mexico. His death was a brutal reminder of the dangers faced by environmental defenders in Latin America—just one year earlier, Berta Cáceres was apparently murdered in Honduras for protesting development of indigenous lands. In a region with the highest homicide rates in the world, those who risk their lives defending the environment are particularly prone to violence—of the 185 environmental advocates who were killed worldwide in 2015, 122 were working in Latin America.



Inside a Virtual “Situation Room” for West Africa’s Election Observers

People conversing at a desk with computers
An online platform allows election observers to tackle problems in real time.

Rights and Justice

Case Watch: How Kosa v. Hungary Is Challenging a Gap in Europe's Anti-Discrimination Protections

The law in several European countries allows NGOs to bring collective complaints against discrimination. But only individuals can bring a case to Europe's top human rights court.

Governance and Accountability

The New Phone-Based Tool That Lets Brazilians Monitor State Violence

A riot police officer spraying a woman in the face with pepper spray
DefeZap collects and catalogs user-submitted videos of state violence, then makes sure the authorities take action.


Native American Water Protectors in North Dakota

Boy with an eye painted on his chest, and holding a toy gun
In this week’s takeover of Open Society’s Instagram feed, photographer Sarah Stacke follows Native American land and water defenders in their movement against the Dakota Access Pipeline.

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