Human rights

The promotion of human rights and democratic principles is at the heart of Norwegian foreign policy. This policy is implemented both at the multilateral level – in forums such as the UN, the OSCE and the Council of Europe – and at country level.

Human rights

Issues relating to human rights and democracy are a high priority in both foreign and development policy. Whether we are supporting human rights defenders, promoting freedom of speech, fighting the death penalty, or supporting the development of democratic constitutions and free elections, safeguarding human rights is the guiding principle. Priority target groups for Norwegian human rights efforts are human rights defenders, minorities, women, children and indigenous peoples.

Norway’s human rights dialogues

Norway has started to cooperate more closely with countries where there are human rights challenges but at the same time potential for improvement through dialogue and contact. Currently, Norway is engaged in formal human rights dialogues of this kind with China, Indonesia and Vietnam.

Indigenous peoples in development cooperation

One of the aims of Norwegian development cooperation is to increase the focus on indigenous peoples, while taking an integrated approach to cooperation on indigenous issues.


Violence and arrests in Venezuela

Since the beginning of February, Venezuela has been hit by a wave of protests and political unrest. More than 35 people are reported to have been killed. Many others have been injured. A number of protesters have also been arrested.

Extended mandate for human rights defenders

On Friday 28 March, the UN Human Rights Council adopted a draft resolution introduced by Norway, and extended the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders for a period of three years.

Foreign policy address to the Storting

"Let me be quite clear about what we are now witnessing: for the first time since the Second World War, a European state has forcibly annexed part of a neighbouring country", said Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Børge Brende, in his address to the Storting.

Death sentences in Egypt unacceptable

“It is completely unacceptable that more than 500 people have been condemned to death in a summary trial. The court’s judgment is shocking, and the conduct of the trial gives cause for concern about the fundamental standards of the Egyptian legal system,” said Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.

Address at UN Commission on the Status of Women

"We want to see a strong message of gender equality and empowerment of girls and women coming out of this year´s Commission on the Status of Women. We need this input to the ongoing discussion on a post-2015 sustainable development framework", said State Secretary Hans Brattskar in his address.

Protect Women Human Rights Defenders: From Resolution to Implementation

"Women human right defenders play a crucial role in the development agenda", said Deputy Foreign Minister Hans Brattskar at an UN-held side-event “Women human right defenders – from resolution to solutions” in New York 10 March 2014.

Violence against women – our response

With the celebration of the International Women’s Day around the corner, we take the opportunity to focus on violence against women in Europe – a violation of fundamental human rights which cuts across all levels of society.

Norway condemns school attack in Nigeria

“I am deeply shocked by the terrorist attack on schoolchildren and other innocent people in Yobe in north-eastern Nigeria. Norway condemns both this latest atrocity and the recent violence against people in the neighbouring state of Borno in the strongest possible terms. I am concerned about the lack of security for civilians in these parts of Nigeria, and would like to express my deepest sympathy with the parents and families of the victims,” said Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.

Norway holds back NOK 50 million of aid to Uganda

“Norway deeply regrets the signing of a new and more stringent anti-gay bill by Uganda’s President today. The new law violates fundamental human rights and the Ugandan constitution. It will exacerbate the situation for an already vulnerable group, and criminalises individuals and organisations working to promote the rights of sexual minorities,” commented Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.

Escalating violence in Ukraine

“Deaths have been reported in connection with the demonstrations in Ukraine. Developments in the country are alarming. I urge both sides to refrain from violence at once and to enter into talks to avoid more bloodshed. The leaders of Ukraine have a particular responsibility for preventing the country from descending into an unpredictable spiral of violence,” said Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.

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Contact information

Section for Human Rights and Democracy

Telephone: +47 23951488

Address

Address
PO Box 8114 Dep.
N-0032 Oslo
Norway

Street address:
7. juni-plassen/ Victoria Terrasse

Human rights

Contact information

Section for Human Rights and Democracy

Telephone: +47 23951488

Address

Address
PO Box 8114 Dep.
N-0032 Oslo
Norway

Street address:
7. juni-plassen/ Victoria Terrasse