“Nataša Kandić has been awarded the Civil Rights Defender of the Year Award for her persistent and fearless work on documenting the war crimes and the most serious human rights abuses in the former Yugoslavia and supporting war crimes trials by providing courts with evidences and witnesses. Because of her human rights work, Nataša has been subjected to repeated death threats, but her concern has always been to support and campaign for victims of war crimes with little regard to her own safety”
For more than two decades Nataša Kandić has been a strong spokesperson for fundamental human rights in the Western Balkans.
In 1992, Nataša Kandić founded the Humanitarian Law Center in Serbia and Kosovo. Tirelessly campaigning for truth and justice for victims of the war, she leads the Center in its mission to assist post-Yugoslav societies to re-establish the rule of law and come to terms with the legacy of massive and systematic violations of human rights. Thanks to the documentation collected by the Humanitarian Law Center regarding crimes that took place in Croatia and in Bosnia and Herzegovina it was possible to establish the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY).
In 1998, when the Serbian repression began getting heavier, the Humanitarian Law Center in Pristina published reports on serious human rights violations in Kosovo, which were in direct contrast to the version spread by the Serbian authorities. In the middle of the NATO bombardments in 1999, Nataša Kandić went to Pristina in order to get a first hand impression of the situation in Kosovo and ended up risked her life by helping people to escape the bombings.
In the past 10 years, Nataša has focused on assisting ICTY in prosecuting war criminals by providing evidences, representing war-victims and collecting evidences on killed and missing people in the region of the former Yugoslavia.
Nataša Kandić – winner of the Civil Rights Defender of the Year Award 2013.