On December 9, 2022, Human Rights House (HRHT) celebrated International Human Rights Defenders Day in Georgia for the fifth time.

The participants of the event were welcomed by the HRHT Board chairperson Baia Pataraia, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Norway to Georgia H.E. Helene Sand Andresen, Political-Economic Counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Tbilisi Michael Honigstein, and HRHT’s coordinator Natia Tavberidze.

In their welcoming remarks, speakers discussed the situation of the human rights defenders in Georgia and the risks and challenges they face.

Poet Rati Amaglobeli spoke about the Freedom of Expression and Literary Activism, discussing the shrinking space for cultural circles in Georgia.

Later, Guro Imnadze (Social Justice Center), Lela Tsiskarishvili (GCRT), and Natia Tavberidze (Human Rights House Tbilisi) discussed the topic: Standing Up for Human Rights – More Important Than Ever during their panel discussion.

At the end of the event, Salome Mukhuradze (IWPR Georgia) reiterated the importance of the “Lekso Award” and journalist Zviad Koridze announced the winners of the “Lekso Award” 2022.

This year’s winners of the “Lekso Award” are David Kashiashvili and Tazo Tkhilishvili from Formula TV and Nino Narimanishvili and Nino Memanishvili from JAMnews for the “best human rights defending video” and the best “human rights defending article” respectively.

The HRHT has established the “Lekso Award for Media Professionals” to support, maintain, and further develop human rights media in Georgia in honor of Lekso Lashkarava, the TV Pirveli News • ტვ პირველი cameraman who died a few days after the violence against journalists on July 5, 2021.

This year, Institute for War & Peace Reporting (IWPR) became a partner of the “Lekso Award”.