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Estonia will serve as co-chair of the Lifeline Fund next year, which assists embattled civil society organisations

29.09.2015

Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand attended the annual donor steering committee meeting of the Lifeline: Embattled CSOs Assistance Fund in New York, which was chaired by Deputy Secretary of State of the United States Antony Blinken and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Norway Børge Brende. Next year, Estonia will serve with the United States as co-chair of Lifeline.

Estonia will take over as co-chair of the Fund from Norway. Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand said this serves as a recognition of Estonia’ activities and its contribution to the promotion of democracy and the development of civil society. “We consider the role and contribution of civil society to be of great importance from the standpoint of the country’s general development, as well as its democratic development,” Foreign Minister Kaljurand said, highlighting the importance of the Lifeline Fund’s global reach.

Kaljurand stressed the importance of the support and ancillary services offered by the fund to CSOs operating in difficult political situations. “Despite daily persecution and violence, these people are committed to work for the benefit of society,” Kaljurand said. “This fund creates additional opportunities for tangible steps towards the promotion of human rights and freedom of expression, which are essential for the development of a peaceful and inclusive society,” the Foreign Minister said.

Estonia has been associated with the Lifeline Fund since the beginning of this initiative, and has supported activities in Estonia’s development cooperation target countries during the years with a total of 80 000 euros. “We will continue to support the activities of the fund,” the Foreign Minister said.

Lifeline, the Embattled Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) Assistance Fund was launched in 2010 at the initiative of the United States Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. Its aim is to assist CSOs and the people working for them in difficult political conditions in developing countries, providing additional protection for victims of government power persecution.

Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand also attended the high-level Solution Summit event held within the framework of the opening week of the UN General Assembly, which focused on the use of technological possibilities for promoting sustainable development. The Estonian company Planet OS was also a participant at the event.

 

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