G20: Hundreds of civil society organizations pledge to avoid Saudi Arabia-led process

Issued by Transparency International Secretariat



Translations: ES


More than 220 civil society organisations from around the world have voiced their concerns over the G20 civil society engagement process hosted by and in Saudi Arabia in 2020. The organisations have pledged not to participate in this year’s process, known as the Civil 20 or ‘C20’, the dedicated stream of meetings for civil society within the G20.

The organisations endorsed a statement, originally published in January 2020, that reads in part:

“Instead of real reform, the Saudi government has been trying to whitewash its dire human rights record by holding major international events in the country. This includes the G20 and – through a government-authorized NGO – the C20. As leading civil society organisations present in most countries around the world (but notably not Saudi Arabia), we cannot participate in a process that seeks to give international legitimacy to a state that provides virtually no space for civil society, and where independent civil society voices are not tolerated.”

Delia Ferreira Rubio, Chair of Transparency International, said: “Civil society offers the G20 independent, expert policy recommendations to promote sustainable development and improve the lives of billions of people. The G20 must be serious about ensuring an effective civil society engagement where all independent voices have equal standing. We continue to work with our partners to find ways of bringing this expertise to the G20, but will not participate in a process that seeks to launder Saudi Arabia’s appalling record on human rights and independent civil society.”

Netsanet Belay, Amnesty International’s Director of Research and Advocacy, said: “It’s high time for the Saudi Arabian authorities to take meaningful steps to end arbitrary arrests, torture, and unfair trials, and to end its widespread resort to the death penalty. We hope that the dozens of human rights defenders and women’s rights activists behind bars - such as Waleed Abu al-Khair, Loujain al-Hathloul, Raif Badawi, Samar Badawi and Naseema al-Sada - gain strength from this act of solidarity by so many organizations worldwide who are not prepared to allow Saudi Arabia’s appalling human rights record to be whitewashed. Even better would be their immediate and unconditional release so that they can engage meaningfully with their government on developing human rights compliant laws and policies at home and  abroad – including in relation to the G20”.

Lysa John, Secretary General, CIVICUS, stated “The Saudi authorities have made it virtually impossible for human rights defenders and civil society organisations to operate. Saudi Arabia does not tolerate freedom of speech and scores of human rights defenders and activists are in jail or exile. We refuse to engage in the Saudi-led C20 because we believe that activists and independent civil society organisations will not be able to freely participate in this process.” 

List of organizations endorsing the statement as of 24 March 2020:

A Common Future

Cameroon

Association Catholique pour la Protection de l'Environnement au Burundi (ACAPE BURUNDI)

Burundi

Access Center for Human Rights (ACHR)

Lebanon

Action for Pastoralists Integrated Resilience

Kenya

Adilisha Child, Youth Development and Family Preservation

Tanzania

Advance Center for Peace and Credibility International

Nigeria

Association for Farmers Rights Defense (AFRD)

Georgia

Africa Rise Foundation

Zimbabwe

African Youth Peer Review Committee (AYPRC)

Liberia

African Youth Union Commission

Nigeria

Association Aide aux Familles et Victimes des Migrations Clandestines (AFVMC)

Cameroon

Association pour l'Integration et le Developpement Durable au Burundi (AIDB Burundi)

Burundi

Alcondoms Cameroun

Cameroon

Alliance des Défenseurs des Droits Humains et de l'Environnement au Tchad

Chad

ALQST

UK

AL-Shafaa Organisation

Iraq

Amagugu International Heritage Center

Zimbabwe

Angels in the Field

India

Anqad Association for Development and Social Welfare

Morocco

Ark Wellness Hub Uganda

Uganda

Action pour le Respect et la Protection de l'Environnement (ARPE)

Cameroon

Asociacion Alfalit Guatemala

Guatemala

Aspafrique-Jics

Switzerland

Association Sauvons la vie, de l'eau potable pour tous (ASSAUVET)

Cameroon

Association de Lutte contre le Chomage et la Torture (ALUCHOTO)

Burundi

Association des Amis de la Nature

Burundi

Association For Promotion Sustainable Development

India

Association les Amis du Verbe

Morocco

Association of the Prodigy Youth for the Sustainable Development

Central African Republic

Association of Working Children and Youths

Benin

Aware Girls

Pakistan

Bina Foundation

Nigeria

Bonabo United

Cameroon

BRIDGE Foundation

Bangladesh

Brother's Keeper

Nigeria

Bunjakko Modern Farm Limited

Uganda

Bureau d'Informations, Formations, Échanges et Recherches pour le Développement (BIFERD)

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies

Egypt

Calvin Ong'era

Kenya

Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture

Canada

Canadian Council for International Co-operation

Canada

Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network

Canada

Center for Constitutional Governance

USA

Center for Development of Civil Society

Armenia

Centre for Law and Democracy

Canada

Centre de Recherche sur l'Anticorruption

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Centre for Legal Support

Gambia

Centre for Media and Development Communication (CEMEDEC)

Nigeria

Centre for Social Policy Develoment

Pakistan

Community Initiative for Social Empowerment (CISE)

Malawi

Children on the Edge

UK

Chinese and Southeast Asian Legal Clinic

Canada

Civil Society in Development (CISU)

Denmark

Civil Society Reference Group (CSRG)

Kenya

Coalition in Defence of Nigerian Democracy and Constitution

Nigeria

Coalition of Youth Organizations (SEGA)

Macedonia

Collectif de Développement et Respect de la Dignité Humaine (CODDHU)

Democratic Republic of the Congo

CODENET

Cameroon

Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia (COMFREL)

Cambodia

Commonwealth Society of Nigeria

Nigeria

Community Health Education Sports Initiative Zambia

Zambia

Community Youth Initiatives Liberia Inc

Liberia

Consultando Soluciones REcosrec

Venezuela

Coalition d'organisations volontaires et solidaires pour des actions de développement communautaire (COSAD)

Benin

Corruption Watch

South Africa

Curtis Business

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Democracy Without Borders

Germany

Denis Miki Foundation

Cameroon

Dhankuta Municipality

Nepal

Diálogo de Mujeres por la Democracia

Nicaragua

Dominion Empowerment Solutions

Kenya

Dytech - OutGrow It

Zambia

Edutech for Africa

Nigeria

EnlacesXSustentabilidad

El Salvador

Enoch Adeyemi Foundation

Nigeria

Equality Now

USA

Fédération Internationale des Entrepreneurs et ou Etudiants Africains d'Affaires (FIEAA)

Guinea

Front Commun pour la Protection de l'Environnement et des Espaces Protégés (FCPEEP)

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Fellowship for Community Enlightenment (FCE)

Uganda

Federación Nacional de Personerías de Colombia (FENALPER)

Colombia

FINESTE

Haiti

Focus Youth Forum (FYF)

Uganda

Freedom Now

USA

Fund Our Future

South Africa

Fundación Integral para el Desarrollo Regional (FINDER)

El Salvador

Fundación Selva Sagrada

Ecuador

Fundación para el Desarrollo de Políticas Sustentables (FUNDEPS)

Argentina

Fundación para el Desarrollo de la Libertad Ciudadana

Panama

Futur Radieux

Togo

Gatef Organization

Egypt

Geospatial Organization

Tanzania

Germany Zimbabwe Forum

Germany

Ghana Association of Private Voluntary Organisations in Development

Ghana

Give Hope Uganda

Uganda

Global Network for Sustainable Development

Nigeria

Global Witness

UK

Global Shapers Castries Hub

Saint Lucia

Globalpeace Chain

Kenya

Gram Bharati Samiti

India

Gulf Centre for Human Rights

Middle East

Gutu United Residents and Ratepayers Association (GURRA)

Zimbabwe

HAKI Africa

Kenya

Hands of External Love Program

Liberia

Hannibal Entertainment Visual Studio Production

Nigeria

Hitesh BHATT

India

HOPE Worldwide-Pakistan

New Zealand

Human Rights First

International

Human Rights Research and Education Centre, University of Ottawa

Canada

Human Rights Watch

USA

Instituto de Comunicación y Desarrollo (ICD)

Uruguay

India Media Centre

India

Individual

Pakistan

Initiative de Gestion Civile des Crises (IGC)

Burundi

Institute of Peace and Conflict Resolution

Nigeria

Instituto para el Futuro Común Amerindio (IFCA)

Honduras

International Center for Accelerated Development

Nigeria

International Development Opportunity Initiative

Ghana

International Federation of Women Lawyers, FIDA Nigeria

Nigeria

International Service for Human Rights (ISHR)

Switzerland

International Student Environmental Coalition

Cameroon

Interregional Public Charitable Organization of Assistance to Persons with Disabilities Sail of Hope

Russia

Jeunesse Assistance

Niger

Justice  Access Point

Uganda

Justice Initiative for the Disadvantaged and Oppressed Persons (JIDOP)

Nigeria

JVBC

United States of America

Key populations Uganda

Uganda

Konstitusiya Arasdırmalar Fondu

Azerbaijan

Vulnerable People's Development Organization (KOTHOWAIN)

Bangladesh

Kurdistan Without Genocide

Iraq

Kuza Livelihood Improovement Projects

Kenya

Laxman Belbase - Individual

Nepal

The Lesbians, Gays & Bisexuals of Botswana (LEGABIBO)

Botswana

Leila Oguntayo

Tunisia

Liberia Media Center

Liberia

Local Communities Development Initiative

Nigeria

Makerere University Uganda

Uganda

Malawi Human Rights Defenders Coalition

Malawi

Mama leah Fondation

Kenya

Moabite Indigenous Nation Trust

United States of America

Morya Samajik Pratishthan

India

Mother of Hope Cameroon (MOHCAM)

Cameroon

Mzimba Youth Organization

Malawi

Narayana

India

National Sudanese Women Association

Sudan

Network of Estonian Non-profit Organizations

Estonia

New Owerri Youth Organisation

Nigeria

Nobel Women's Initiative

Canada

One More Salary

Tanzania

ONG Les Batisseurs

United States of America

Organization of the Justice Campaign

Iraq

ORUD

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Pacific Sexual and Gender Diversity Network

Fiji

Pakistan NGOs Forum

Pakistan

Palestinian Center for Communication and Development Strategies

Palestine

Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA)

Palestine

Parent-Child Intervention Centre

Nigeria

Participatory Research Action Network (PRAN)

Bangladesh

Peaceful and Active Centre for Humanity (PEACH)

Pakistan

PEN International

UK

Primadent Initiative for Oral Health

Nigeria

Public Organization Youth House

Tajikistan

Rainbow Pride Foundation

Fiji

Rainbow Sunrise Mapambazuko

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Real Agenda For Youth Transformation

Zimbabwe

Red Global de Acción Juvenil (GYAN)

Mexico

Richard Bennett

United Kingdom

Rural Initiatives in Sustainability & Empowerment (RISE)

Pakistan

Rideau Institute

Canada

Rising Generation for Youth Organization

Nigeria

Réseau Nigérien des Défenseurs des Droits Humains (RNDDH)

Niger

Role Model Zambia

Zambia

Sauti ya Haki Tanzania

Tanzania

Self

Norway

Shanduko Yeupenyu Child Care

Zimbabwe

Sierra Leone School Green Clubs

Sierra Leone

Social Watch Benin

Benin

Society for Development and Research

Pakistan

Society for Rural Women and Youth Development

Nigeria

South Sudan Community Change Agency

South Sudan

Street Youth Connection Sierra Leone (SYC-SL)

Sierra Leone

Success Capital Organisation

Botswana

Sudda Changing Lives Foundation

Ghana

Synergy of experts on environment and sustainable development

Burkina Faso

TATU Project

Tanzania

Human Rights Defenders Network (ACPDH)

Burundi

The Rock Shalom

Kenya

The Social Science Centre for African Development (KUTAFITI)

Democratic Republic of the Congo

The Young Republic

Sweden

The Tax Justice Network

UK

The Youth Voice of SA

South Africa

Tochukwu Anyadike

Nigeria

Transparency International Australia

Australia

Tranparency International Bangladesh

Bangladesh

Transparencia por Colombia

Colombia

Transparency International EU

Belgium

Transparency International Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan

Transparency International Uganda

Uganda

Transparency International Ukraine

Ukraine

Transparency International Pakistan

Pakistan

Union des Frères pour Alternatif du Developpement Intégré (UFADI)

Haiti

Uganda Youth Guidance and Development Association

Uganda

Ugonma Foundation

Nigeria

Ukana West 2 Community Based Health Initiative

Nigeria

Union for the Promotion, Defense of Human Rights and the Environment-UPDDHE.GL

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Vanuatu Association of Non-Government Organisation

Vanuatu

VASUDHAIVA KUTUMBAKAM - The World is One Family

India

Veille Citoyenne

Togo

Vijana Hope

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Volunteers Hub Liberia

Liberia

Volunteers Welfare for Community Based Care of Zambia (VOWAZA)

Zambia

WDC Somalia

Somalia

We Lead Intergrated Foundation

Cameroon

Women Empowerment Group (WEG)

Kenya

Women United to Fight Sexual Violence in Liberia (WOUFSVIL)

Liberia

Women's March Global

United States of America

World Youth Union SL

Sierra Leone

WorldEat

Ghana

WORLDLITE

Cote D'Ivoire

Yole Africa

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Young League Pakistan

Pakistan

Youth Advocates for Change

Zambia

Youth For Change

Nigeria

Youth for Development Network

Liberia

Youth For Environment Education And Development Foundation (YFEED Foundation)

Nepal

Youth for Future 2006

Romania

Youth Harvest Foundation Ghana

Ghana

Youth Leadership Initiative for Social Justice

Nigeria

YOUTHAID

Liberia

Zambian Governance Foundation for Civil Society

Zambia

Zimbabwe Climate Change Coalition

Zimbabwe


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