Human rights emphasize the need for cooperation with civil society organizations

The NCHR Reflection Workshop on the Reality and Prospects of Civil Society Organizations recommended that OHCHR should adopt civil society initiatives aimed at the promotion and protection of human rights and designate a section of the Secretariat on UNHCR’s relationship with civil society organizations and organize them in specialized groups with OHCHR contribution and support for capacity-building of civil society organizations and those working in the field of human rights.

It also recommended consistency in the preparation of research and studies and participation in UNHCR’s own events.

The President of the National Commission for Human Rights, Dr. Rafat Merghani Abbas Al-Amin, said that there could be no improvement in the human rights situation in any country beyond the active role of civil society organizations, and civil society could not have a role in isolation from respect for its freedom of action and independence.

Independence must not only be from the Government, but also from all political agendas and purposes.

He stressed that the criterion of distinction between organizations and parties must be precise and clear. The Voluntary Labour Code, which gave management broad powers that threatened voluntary action and affected its freedom and independence, should be revised, thus weakening civil society.

UNHCR’s interest in communicating with civil society organizations and in communicating with the Government had been raised, since the Office was a link between civil society and the Government, a relationship that must continue to exist and function.

The interactive meeting discussed three papers on OHCHR’s relationship with civil society organizations, the realities of civil society organizations, the challenges and the prospects for linkages between OHCHR and civil society organizations.

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