The annual conference of the Estonian Institute of Human Rights is one of the most important events related to human rights in Estonia. Every year, the conference welcomes over 400 activists, diplomats, politicians, analysts and experts from Estonia and the rest of the world who wish to resolve important topical issues related to human rights. The seventh in the series of annual human rights conferences will take place in 2017. The patron of the event is Kersti Kaljulaid, the President of the Republic of Estonia.
Over the years, the people who have made presentations at the annual conference have included: Madeleine K. Albright, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, Toomas Hendrik Ilves, Mustafa Dzhemilev, Dalee Sambo Dorough, Nina Khrushcheva, Stephen J. Rapp, Zhanna Nemtsova, Péter Szijjártó, Jan Knutsson, Ülle Madise, George Pocheptsov, Dominique Reynié, Marriët Schuurman, and many other high-level speakers.
The conference usually takes place on 10 December, international Human Rights Day. In 2017, the annual conference will take place on 8 December.
In addition to bringing together experts in the field, the conference also attracts representatives from various walks of life who may not even usually meet. The annual human rights conference is a platform where politicians, students, writers and jurists, faculty members and practitioners can discuss human rights issues in one room for an entire day.
Over the years, the conference has dealt with various topics; for example, the impact of propaganda on human rights and the opportunities for freedom of speech in a multicultural Europe. The foreign ministers of different countries have discussed the problems related to the European refugee crisis; analysed the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights; spoken about the situation in Ukraine; the human rights of indigenous peoples, and the challenges posed by Russia. Other topics have included religious freedom in Estonia and the European Union, crimes against humanity and how to prosecute them, human rights and security, human rights on the internet, and many other topical subjects.
The annual meeting is also exceptional for its multilingual nature. The conference is usually conducted in three languages – Estonian, English and Russian – with simultaneous translation. In 2016, based on the diversity of the presenters, German and French were included as working languages of the conference. The annual human rights conference is a high-level international conference, and its impact has continued to broaden over the years.
Swissôtel Tallinn, Tornimäe 3, 10145 Tallinn, Estonia