Reprisals against human rights defenders in retaliation for their engagement with international and regional human rights systems constitute an attack on human rights, the rule of law, and the international and regional mechanisms themselves. When not taken seriously it will undermine the whole Human Rights system and scare defenders from their engagement.

Norway’s efforts to support human rights defenders Guide for the foreign service
Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 2010
This set of guidelines is to intensifying Norway’s efforts in the area of protecting HRD. The aim has been to provide sound, practical and relevant guidelines that will inspire you in your work. They are primarily intended as a practical guide for local human rights work but should also form the basis of the efforts in

Reprisals guidelines for participants of the UPR Info precessions 

The purpose of this handbook is to share information to make sure that human rights defenders and others exposed to reprisals will understand the risks they could face due their engagement in the promotion of human rights, and what means are available to protect themselves in case of intimidation and reprisals.

Reprisals handbook
International service for Human Rights (ISHR) 2018
The handbook highlights the risks that defenders can face from interacting with those systems, and suggests ways in which defenders can leverage the weight of the UN and regional human rights mechanisms to provide some degree of protection against those risks. In doing so it does not aim to provide a fully comprehensive protection solution. In all cases defenders should consider which option might be best, based on the context and particulars of a case. (also available in French, Spanish, Russian and Chinese)  (pdf. 46 pages)

UN mandate created to reduce reprisals against human rights defenders
International Justice Resource Center (IJRC) 2016
An introduction to the mandate given by  United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, in consultation with the High Commissioner for Human Rights,  to Assistant Secretary General for Human Rights, Andrew Gilmour, to lead UN work on ending intimidation and reprisals against human rights defenders.

Criminalization of the Work of Human Rights Defenders
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights 2015

This report addresses the problem of the misuse of criminal law by State and non-State actors with the aim to criminalize the work of human rights defenders. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR or “the Commission”) has continued to receive alarming reports of a trend indicating that human rights defenders in various contexts are systematically subjected to unfounded criminal proceedings in order to paralyze or delegitimize their causes (pdf, 152 pages).