Five Ways You Helped Us Fight Injustice in 2022
Throughout 2022, we continued to fight injustice across the globe.
During the past twelve months, six legal actions were filed, we published three reports, and submitted numerous letters to government and regulatory bodies.
None of this work would be possible without our visionary supporters and we are very grateful to everyone who has donated in the past year to make our work possible.
Here are a few of our highlights from the past year:
On 24 February 2022, Russia launched a large-scale air and ground invasion of Ukraine. Within hours, it was clear that grave civilian harm was to be a significant feature of this conflict, with millions forced to flee and others killed or injured in their homes.
We responded by launching a justice and accountability project with our partners Bellingcat. Our project aims to support national and international prosecutors who are gathering open source evidence of crimes so that war criminals can be brought to justice.
In September 2020 we filed an unprecedented application with the European Court of Human Rights on behalf of six young people in Portugal against 33 countries for failing to take urgent action to prevent climate catastrophe.
In July 2022, our case was referred to the Court’s highest Grand Chamber where it will be heard by 17 judges sometime in 2023. If successful, these governments will be legally bound, not only to ramp up their emissions cuts, but also to tackle their overseas contributions to climate change, including the worldwide emissions of their multinational companies.
In October, we and our partners World Uyghur Congress, took the UK government to London’s High Court to challenge their failure to prevent the import of forced-labour cotton into the UK.
The hearing was held two weeks after we had written to the Irish Customs Authorities with detailed evidence of how forced-labour cotton from the Uyghur region of China is entering Ireland’s retail industry. These legal actions have the potential to rewrite the relationship between the high street and forced labour goods.
Five years ago, Barbuda was hit by Hurricane Irma. It damaged around 90% of the island’s properties. In the aftermath, opportunistic developers moved in and began destroying protected parks and wetlands to make way for an airport runway, golf course, and luxury accommodation for the ultra-wealthy.
Throughout 2022, we helped local residents prepare for several upcoming court cases that aim to halt or prevent construction at sites across the island. We also successfully provided support to 22 Land Defenders who faced charges of trespass.
In the autumn of 2022, we published two reports on the use of online open-source investigations. The reports are the product of a four-year collaboration between Bellingcat and GLAN and draw their analysis from our common work documenting and analysing the aerial bombardment campaign of the Saudi-led Coalition in the war in Yemen.
Following release of the reports, we have published our pioneering methodology which will allow other organisations to secure online open-source information in a manner that supports accountability efforts.