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The Luxembourg government prioritises the promotion and defence of human rights through the various elements of its external action. Through this cross-cutting priority, the Luxembourg Development Cooperation aims primarily to strengthen the respect for and protection and realisation of human rights in order to create an environment that offers equal opportunities, so that each individual can freely determine the course of his or her existence. In other words, the aim is to implement the principle of leaving no one behind, as enshrined in Agenda 2030 and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda for the financing of development, which lie at the heart of Luxembourg’s overall development cooperation strategy.

In its partner countries, the actions of the Luxembourg Development Cooperation therefore form part of this human rights-based approach, in the sense that an improvement in governance seeks to strengthen the institutions of the State in fulfilling their roles as bodies bound by obligations. Appropriate legal and administrative frameworks and institutions are necessary in order to address the needs and rights of people. Support must also be given to rights holders, who will be better able to claim and exercise their fundamental rights, which comprise civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights.

With its partner countries, Luxembourg maintains a regular political dialogue at ministerial level. The Indicative Cooperation Programmes include the field of human rights and are the subject of an annual review as part of the partnership committee meetings that take place alternately in Luxembourg and in the relevant partner country.

Through its new humanitarian strategy, Luxembourg remains committed to promoting respect for international humanitarian law (IHL), and ensuring respect for human rights, as well as supporting efforts to build a lasting peace, notably through transitional justice activities.

On 15 November 2022, Franz Fayot delivered his analysis of the challenges faced by the Luxembourg Development Cooperation to the Chamber of Deputies. During his speech, the minister referred to the importance that the Luxembourg Development Cooperation attaches to respect for human rights in all its interventions. In order to strengthen its commitment and impact in this area, the Luxembourg Development Cooperation plans in the future to increase the budget allocated to projects that specifically promote the protection of human rights in their political and civil dimensions. For human rights are universal, interrelated, interdependent and indivisible. In order for people to fully benefit from their human dignity, it is imperative to guarantee fundamental freedoms, such as the freedom of expression, the protection of privacy, the right to equal treatment or to legal aid, to name a few, that are ensured in States where the rule of law holds sway and in democracies. In countries where the Luxembourg Development Cooperation is active, support will continue, in particular, for human rights defenders.