Human Rights Training Workshop for National Human Rights CSOs and Activists

Nov 21, 2012

The outbreak of the Libyan revolution in February 2011 has been followed by accusations of human rights violations by involved parties. This has added to the 42 years heritage of human rights violations committed by the previous regime. As a common feature of the Arab Spring Revolution, the huge accumulation of violations and imposed rights restrictions was the main driver for Libya’s uprising.

Undoubtedly, immense challenges lie ahead. The conditions of detention and treatment of detainees held by various revolutionary brigades and the lack of oversight by the central authorities creates an environment conducive to torture and ill-treatment. Moreover, a structure and process for judicial screening of detainees is not put in place yet so that those detainees held without any legal basis can be released while others receive a fair trial.

The concept of civil society is new to the national context, most of the CSOs are newly established, lacking sufficient capacities to meet expectations and achieve their objectives. Recently, there has been an initiative launched by few Human Rights CSOs to synergizing the efforts of Human Rights groups and activists, & aiming at establishing a common platform to coordinate their work, and unify their efforts, some were calling for establishing a “National Coalition for Human Rights”, but this is still at its early stages.

In close collaboration with UNSMIL, UNDP through its “Support to Civic Engagement (SCELT)” & “Transitional Governance” Projects aims at educating the Libyan civil society organizations for civic engagement and the establishment and facilitation of national human rights networks.

With this background, a Human rights training workshop for national Human Rights CSOs and activists has been organized in partnership with the National Council for Human Rights and Public Liberties with the aim to Increase knowledge and understanding on challenges & opportunities in human rights issues among the CSOs, build partnerships and facilitate establishment of active human rights networks to support synergized approach, and develop capacities for Human Rights Advocacy and monitoring to undertake in the future actions such as Build a strategy for national CSOs to monitor human rights status and violation, and support scaling up and dissemination of knowledge  acquired during the workshop form nucleus of trained CSOs and activists for further advocacy and capacity building processes.

The training took place at the Radisson blu hotel in Tripoli, from 10 to 15 of November 2012, the opening ceremony witnessed high profile participation by the Libyan Human Rights Council, where the deputy of the council, UNDP country director, & the representative of the Arab human rights organisation, speakers have emphasised the importance of increasing the basic knowledge on Human Rights among the civil society through similar events, and the need for the human rights CSOs to have a more coordinated approach to improve their capacity ion  monitoring and advocacy  for human rights.

The participants came from more than 8 different cities, and represented several Human rights CSOs, among them and the most inspiring participants were the Human Rights Activists from the Tawrgha IDP camp, who were very happy not only to participate and gain knowledge, but also to discuss and present their needs and living conditions in their internal exile.