A Rapid Response: The ability to identify the moment when a trained nonviolent presence can save lives and to respond quickly is part of the Nonviolent Peaceforce (NP) vision.
In February 2007, a women’s human rights defenders group requested international accompaniment. While carrying out their work documenting human rights abuses and protecting human rights defenders, the group themselves received substantial direct threats. The group had been harassed before, but at that time the threats grew in intensity. NP managed to place personnel in Guatemala within a month. Their four-person team remained, throughout and beyond the highly volatile election period of 2007.
NP’s physical presence, and the process of building international awareness, gave these Guatemalans some measure of security and space to continue their work of protecting human rights defenders.