International Federation for Human Rights

Human rights organizations are united by the non-governmental International Federation for Human Rights. The third-oldest international human rights organization in the world after Save the Children and Anti-Slavery International was founded in 1922.

Meaning of International Federation for Human Rights

International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) was the result of 10 national organizations who joined together in 1922 to form it. It now consists of 178 human rights organizations from around 100 different nations. The local, regional, and global actions of its member groups are coordinated and supported by FIDH. Independent and unaffiliated with any party or religion is FIDH.

Additionally, it has observer status before the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights, the Organization International de la Francophonie, and the International Labor Organization, as well as consultative status before the United Nations, UNESCO, and the Council of Europe. "To contribute to the respect of all the rights defined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights" is the stated mission of FIDH.

It aims to "effectively improve victim protection, human rights violation prevention, and the sanctioning of their perpetrators." The organization's World Congress and International Board, which has 22 members, sets its priorities with the help of its 45-person international secretariat.

Priorities and Functions

Following are the major functions −

  • Protecting Human Rights Defenders − The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders was established by FIDH and the World Organization Against Torture to safeguard human rights advocates. Its responsibilities include gathering information, alerting the international community, consulting with national authorities, and promoting the development of stronger safeguards for human rights advocates on a national, regional, and global scale.

  • Promote And Protect Women's Rights − In many states, discrimination and violence against women are still commonplace. The FIDH works to end discrimination, make it easier for women to access the legal system, and end the practice of allowing those who commit sexual crimes during armed conflict to go unpunished.

  • Protect Migrants' Rights − States that impose tighter restrictions on people's movements are turning migrant laborers into nothing more than commodities and leaving them open to exploitation. From the country of origin to the country of destination, FIDH looks into cases of rights breaches, campaigns for governmental and political reforms, and files lawsuits to hold offenders accountable. In June 2013, FIDH offered two survivors of the "Left to Die" boat legal support: When their little boat ran out of gasoline and drifted for two weeks along one of the busiest shipping channels in the world, 72 migrants from Sub-Saharan Africa had fled Libya in 2011. The French and Spanish militaries were cited in a complaint for failing to 'help people in danger,' along with three other NGOs.

  • Promote Effective Judicial Mechanisms That Respect Human Rights − The FIDH promotes transitional justice procedures that uphold the rights of victims and works to establish independent judicial systems. When using national remedies is impracticable or ineffective, FIDH assists victims in bringing their claims to the International Criminal Court, regional human rights courts, or using extraterritorial jurisdiction to access courts in other nations. The FIDH takes part in enhancing these regional and global mechanisms. Other significant FIDH goals include the complete abolishment of the death penalty and the protection of the right to a fair trial, including in the battle against terrorism.

  • Strengthen Respect for Human Rights In The Context of Globalization − The FIDH records and denounces corporate human rights abuses and calls for economic actors to be held accountable, including through legal action. The FIDH works to ensure that economic, social, and cultural rights are effectively implemented and that they are placed at the center of investment and trade talks.

  • Defend Democratic Ideals and Aid Victims During Armed Conflict − FIDH responds to requests from member organizations in closed nations and during armed or violent political turmoil. It carries out field investigations and mobilizes the world community via third parties, regional and international organizations, and other power bases.


  • Monitoring Victims' Rights − These initiatives are carried out by impartial human rights professionals from all geographical areas, including fact-finding and trial observation missions, research, advocacy, and litigation. The FIDH first advocated an international criminal court in 1927, followed by a "World Declaration of Human Rights." The FIDH issued a new proclamation in 1936 that included the rights of women, children, and the old as well as the rights to labor, welfare, leisure, and education. 576 human rights advocates were freed between 2009 and 2012, while the legal persecution of 116 advocates came to an end.

  • Getting the Global Community Involved − In their relations with global and regional intergovernmental organizations, FIDH offers advice and assistance to its member organizations and other local partners. At the UN in Geneva and New York, at the European Union in Brussels, and, starting in 2006, at the League of Arab States in Cairo, FIDH has created delegations. Over 500 lawsuits were brought by and supported by FIDH before international IGOs between 2004 and 2005. FIDH supports the creation of monitoring methods and takes part in standard-setting activities.


Paris serves as FIDH's administrative center. The majority of its support comes from a group of devoted volunteers. The organizational structure comprises elected boards and a small group of permanent employees who provide support for the board members' and the mission delegates' work. The FIDH Congress, which is held every three years, brings together member organizations to elect the International Board, set organizational priorities, and determine whether to admit new partners or expel existing members who no longer meet the organization's requirements.

The FIDH International Board is made up of a president, a treasurer, 15 vice presidents, and five secretaries general. Each member serves voluntarily and represents a different part of the world. A consultative position is granted to honorary presidents on the International Board. Three times a year, the International Board gathers to decide on the political and strategic stances of FIDH as well as to create and approve the budget.

The President, the Treasurer, and the five Secretaries General make up the Executive Board, which is in charge of overseeing the daily operations of FIDH. Once a month, this group gets together to decide on issues brought up by member groups and requests.


The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) seeks to make substantial advancements in the protection of individuals who have been the victims of human rights violations, in the prevention of such crimes, and in the criminal prosecution of those who commit such violations.

Frequently Asked Question

Q1. Who is the CEO of FIDH?

Ans. Alice Mogwe was unanimously re-elected as FIDH's president on October 27, 2022, and a new International Board was also elected. The 41st FIDH Congress, which commemorates the 100th anniversary of the worldwide organisation, was taking place in Paris at the time of this re-election.

Q2. Which is the world's largest human rights organisation?

Ans. Amnesty International has more than a million members, supporters, and donors in more than 140 countries and territories, making it the largest grassroots human rights organisation in the world.

Q3. Which country first introduced human rights?

Ans. The slaves of Babylon were set free in 539 B.C. by Cyrus the Great, the first king of Persia. Human rights concepts swiftly made their way from Babylon to India, Greece, and ultimately Rome.

Updated on: 09-May-2023


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