SweFOR has been present in Mexico since 2000. The work is focused on defending human rights through international accompaniment.
At SweFOR we have extensive experience accompanying human rights defenders and other civil society and peace actors. Since 2000, we have had international observers present in Mexico, focusing our work in the state of Chiapas. Our work in Mexico responds to two key concepts: pre-emptive presence and international accompaniment. Our objectives also include dissemination of information on human rights, and lending moral support to human rights defenders, as well as to the organizations we accompany.
What is international accompaniment?
Our point of departure is the defense of human rights. We are impartial and do not take sides in any conflict, categorically rejecting all forms of violence.
SweFOR’s main objective is aimed at creating greater space for action for Mexicans and their organizations, whose work in defending human rights places them at risk of aggression. SweFOR’s international presence helps prevent aggression against those we accompany, and protect their physical and mental integrity. Thus, an international presence can help stop violence and raise the political cost of aggression.
Who can be accompanied?
SweFOR accompanies civil society and nonviolent actors, both individuals and organizations, who through their work promote respect and fulfilment of human rights.
How do SweFOR carry out accompaniment?
In Mexico, we have a permanent presence in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas, where we accompany organizations as they carry out their work and meetings, both in urban and rural settings around the state. Our model of accompaniment seeks to raise the profile of the organization being accompanied, making our international presence public and visible. As a strategy for preventing possible human rights violations, we notify relevant authorities regarding the specific accompaniment we are undertaking and our movements, constantly displaying the SweFOR logo.
We seek to create greater awareness regarding the situation faced by human rights defenders and, by so doing, hope to improve it. We are in permanent dialogue with local, regional, and national authorities in Mexico, as well as with Mexican civil society organizations, international organizations and with embassies.
We have the support of networks and rapid action mechanisms that allow us to disseminate information and create immediate responses should human rights defenders, their organizations or other people with whom we work, face aggression.
SweFOR’s Mexican office is located in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas.
Coordinator in Mexico: Caroline Andersson
Email to the team of accompaniers: firstname.lastname@example.org