Activists from Iran, Kazakhstan, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia, Sudan, Syria, and Tibet are taking part in the fifth Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy.
The February 19 meeting comes in advance of next week’s annual session of the United Nations Human Rights Council.
Organizers say the meeting is aimed at shining a light on urgent human rights situations that require global attention.
Participants are expected to include Mukhtar Mai, a Pakistani gang-rape survivor and women's rights activist; Marina Nemat, an Iranian author who was jailed and tortured at Evin prison; Pyotr Verzilov, a Russian activist and husband of jailed Pussy Riot member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova; and Lukpan Akhmedyarov, a Kazakh journalist.
The meeting is sponsored by a coalition of 20 human rights nongovernmental organizations from around the world.
With reporting by AFP