Secretariat Holds Launch Event

 

PRESS RELEASE

30 March 2014

Secretariat Holds Successful Launch Event in Jericho, Palestine

Announcement of 24 Core Funding Grantee CSOs

Jericho, Palestine – The Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Secretariat (Secretariat) successfully held its “Launch Event” on 26 March 2014 in Jericho, Palestine.  The Secretariat is a joint donor program sponsored by Sweden (lead donor), Denmark, the Netherlands and Switzerland.  The objective of the program is that “[a] HR/IHL Secretariat is institutionalized in the CSO environment and considered a key player and resourceful partner in the promotion of HR and IHL issues in the oPt.”  The Secretariat’s work falls within three components: fund management, capacity building support and policy dialogue.

The event was attended by the Secretariat, representatives of the Donor Consortium (Consulate General of Sweden, Netherlands Representative Office to the Palestinian Authority, Royal Danish Representative Office and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation), the Managing Partners (NIRAS NATURA AB and Institute of Law at Birzeit University) and 21 of the 24 core funding grantees.[1]  Representatives of Mezan and Al Dameer in Gaza were unable to attend due to the rejection of their permit requests by the Israeli occupation authorities.

Welcome remarks were provided by: Dr. Mustafa Mari, Secretariat Manager; Stina Mossberg, Managing Director, NIRAS NATURA AB; Johanna Strömquist, Swedish Deputy Consul General in Jerusalem; and Ambassador Martin Dahinden, Director General, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation).  Dr. Mustafa Mari thanked the Secretariat team, donors and partner CSOs for their work while highlighting the difficulties faced by the Palestinian people and the need for supporting the human rights and international humanitarian law CSO sector.  Ms. Stina Mossberg thanked the donors for their continuous support to CSOs over the years in facing the difficulties of their work.  The donor representatives of Sweden and Switzerland extended thanks to the partner CSOs, the Managing Partner and the Secretariat.  Ambassador Martin Dahinden thanked Sweden for the exceptional leadership role provided thus far. 

The Secretariat provided a presentation on its inception phase and progress to date, along with a presentation on its online presence and upcoming events for CSO partners and donors.

The 24 core funding grantees were then announced and introduced.  Afterwards, an open discussion was held with CSO partners on topics such as complementarity between project and core funding as well as thematic consideration for the upcoming project funding cycle, as well as other relevant issues.  Some of the themes raised by CSOs included, but were not limited to: human rights education, women, youth, torture and rehabilitation, culture and arts, support to human rights defenders and support to community-based organizations and medium-sized CSOs. CSOs and donors also engaged in discussion about the policy dialogue and how CSOs see this as a means of seeking donor action at the international level – both in their respective capitals and in international organizations – in a way which complements the support provided through the Secretariat.

As a result of the Secretariat’s prequalification phase and call for proposals, the Secretariat allocated a total of 10.48 million USD to the 24 partner CSOs over a period of three years. The Secretariat’s fund in support of human rights CSOs operating in the oPt totals around 12.98 million USD, with around 2.5 million USD allocated to project funding. The Secretariat expects to release its first call for project funding within the coming weeks.

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[1] Core funding grantees include (in alphabetical order): Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel;  Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association; Al Dameer Association for Human Rights; Al Haq; B’Tselem – The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories; BADIL – Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights; Bimkom – Planners for Planning Rights; Breaking the Silence; Breaking the Silence; Defense for Children International-Palestine Section; Democracy and Workers’ Rights Center in Palestine; Gisha – Legal Center for Freedom of Movement; HaMoked – Center for the Defense of the Individual; Palestinian Center for Human Rights; Palestinian Working Women Society for Development; Physicians for Human Rights – Israel; Public Committee against Torture in Israel; Jerusalem Legal Aid and Human Rights Center; MIFTAH – The Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy; Women Affairs Technical Committee; Womens Studies Center; Women’s Centre for Legal Aid and Counseling; Women’s Affairs Center; Yesh Din – Volunteers for Human Rights.

 

FOR THE PDF, SEE: 14.03.30_Secretariat_PR_Launch_Event_FINAL.pdf

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Disclaimer
The views expressed in this publication
are those of the author(s) and do not
necessarily reflect the views of the
Secretariat, Niras NATURA AB, Birzeit University,
or the donor governments.