Human Rights Defenders in EU Visa Policy: Recommendations for Reform

This report examines the legal and practical barriers that human rights defenders (HRDs) face when applying for visas to enter the European Union. The paper draws on legal research, survey responses from self-identified HRDs, and in-depth interviews with HRDs on their travel and visa application experiences. We provide an overview of the EU visa regime and the challenges faced by HRDs, as well as recommendations for changes that could improve this process in a way that would better meet the needs of these individuals as they fight for human rights in their respective countries.