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A group of students from Ahmed Bin Mohammed Military College visited the NHRC. The director of the Legal Affairs Department, […]

A group of students from Ahmed Bin Mohammed Military College visited the NHRC. The director of the Legal Affairs Department, Mr. Jaber Al Hwail, delivered a lecture on the establishment of the NHRC, its mandate, mechanisms for receiving complaints and efforts to monitor human rights situation in the state.

Al Hwail also answered the questions from the visiting students on human rights and the role of the NHRC in raising awareness and fostering human rights culture through the awareness campaigns, training courses, seminars, workshops and conferences at the local, regional and international levels.

He said: “The National Human Rights Committee fulfils its advisory role in all fields of human rights and for all categories of the society in Qatar whether citizens, residents or government or private institutions. Whoever lives in Qatar enjoys his or her full rights guaranteed by the Constitution and laws ratified by the State without discrimination.” He added that the NHRC organizes specialized training courses for law enforcement personnel such as police officers, prosecutors and judges to enlighten them about human rights in law enforcement process.

Mr. Momen Dardari, a legal adviser at the NHRC, gave a lecture on the International Humanitarian Law and its relation to the International Human Rights Law, where he stressed the importance of officers and the armed forces members’ awareness of the International Humanitarian Law and the rules and principles of human rights due to its impact on law enforcement in some cases which need their presence in dealing with civilians.

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Ms. Maryam bint Abdullah Al-Attiyah, Secretary General of the National Human Rights Committee has announced the launch of the fourth […]

Ms. Maryam bint Abdullah Al-Attiyah, Secretary General of the National Human Rights Committee has announced the launch of the fourth season of “Martyr Ali Hassan Al Jaber Award”, a Qatari national who was working as a cameraman for “Al Jazeera” TV channel and martyred while covering the war in Libya, in March 10, 2011 .

The amount of the award is worth 20.000 U.S. dollars; contestants shall compete for the award in three categories, namely: press photos, press releases and short documentary films. Winners in the first 2 categories shall be honored and awarded 5000 USD. While the winner of the third category shall be awarded an amount ranging from 5000 to 10.000 USD.

Al-Attiyah said that the subject of participatory works should be of a humanitarian nature not a political nature, so that the candidate should have provided significant and distinctive contributions through his/her work in the detection of crimes or serious violations committed against a people, and should have contributed to the prevention of such crimes and violations and revealed them to the public opinion; in addition to the other technical terms and conditions including that works and contributions submitted by contestants or participating institutions should not be provided by their owners in similar competitions or helped them to win previous awards, and that the nominated works and contributions will not be returned to their owners, they will be kept in the archive of the National Human Rights Committee.
Works and contributions submitted in the category of the press photos, should be of a high-quality in which the raw file of the image is attached; while works and contributions submitted in the category of the press release should meet all the common features of the press release including addressing the subject, reviewing points of views of all parties including those who are involved and the others whom get affected as well as addressing solutions; with regard to the short documentary film, of a high-quality (full HD 16: 9) and not exceeding 10 minutes.

In 2013, The National Human Rights Committee has selected a photographer the DCMF has campaigned for as the winner of a journalism prize; the winner Mohammed Othman is a victim to Israeli violence aimed at preventing him from reporting events in Gaza through his camera, the Palestinian journalist, came on a wheel chair, to receive the prize dedicated to his Qatari colleague who passed away while conveying the atrocities of Kaddafi’s regime to the world. In 2014, for the press release category, the Egyptian journalist Mohamed Saeed, for the category of documentary film, Hafsa Aubl from Yemen and the third winner for the category of the press photo is the Syrian journalist Mohamed Ghassan Al Jirwidi. The amount of the award is worth 15.000 U.S. dollars; Each winner honored and given 5000 USD as well as the award shield.

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The NHRC Chairman Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri and the Yemini Ministry of Human Rights Dr. Izz Al-Deen Al-Asbahi […]

The NHRC Chairman Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri and the Yemini Ministry of Human Rights Dr. Izz Al-Deen Al-Asbahi signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the areas of human rights; It covered many areas of cooperation, including issues related to the development of the human rights system, strategies and action plans. It also took into account the development of future relations between both sides and the dissemination of concepts pertaining to the support and protection of human rights and the development of a bilateral framework so that each party would benefit from the technical and institutional expertise of the other party.

The memo stated that priority should be given to activities aimed at strengthening cooperation to develop the support and protection of human rights systems and the associated skills related to the institutional development of human rights (governmental and non-governmental), the development of plans and strategies, implementation of human rights and support for capacity building.
It also dealt with the exchange of experiences in the field of human rights and support programs and activities for human rights education, cooperation in providing consultancy and research, supporting and strengthening cooperation in the fight against trafficking in human beings and other priority areas.

Dr. Al Marri, added that the government of Qatar took serious steps to solve problems and challenges relating to to the present sponsorship and exit permit system, where the draft of the amended law has been forwarded to the NHRC earlier and it had given its views and recommendations.the draft law seeks to achieve balance between the rights of workers and their employers and offers more guarantees of freedom and protection to foreign workers.The NHRC, he said, was established more than 12 years ago, and was mature enough to share its experiences with Yemen.

Al Isbahi said that the MOU covered many areas of cooperation, including issues related to development of human rights systems, strategies and action plans in his country.Support for capacity building in the area of human rights is to be one of the main areas of cooperation, said the minister.

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At the conclusion of the regional workshop on the legal prospects for asylum, participants stressed the need to find jobs […]

At the conclusion of the regional workshop on the legal prospects for asylum, participants stressed the need to find jobs for refugees, even inside the camps to deal with the psychological conditions that they might be exposed to during the asylum period.

Participants also highlighted the efforts of the Arab countries in the protection of the rights of refugees on its territories, especially those that have not signed the Geneva Convention on the rights of refugees, as well as calling on the need to respect the rights of refugees in education, the integration of refugees’ rights in the culture in the curriculum, taking into account international agreements governing education issues, and not involving issues of emigrants and traded for the sake of political gain and restrict media coverage of as a humanitarian issue.

The workshop was organized over two days, the National Human Rights Commission, in cooperation with the High Commissioner of the United Nations for Refugees (UNHCR) with the participation of about 50 members of the Gulf Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf.

Mr. Jaber Al Hwail, the Director of the Legal Affairs Department in the National Human Rights Committee, stated in the press statement at the conclusion of the workshop that The NHRC and the UN High Commissioner for Refugee Affairs jointly organize a training workshop annually on Refugee Affairs, most recently in 2013 on women’s refugee rights, in the framework of the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the two sides and mutual cooperation in addressing humanitarian issues, especially with regard to the situation of immigrants whose number is increasing alarmingly in recent years.

Dr. Yousef Al Daradkeh, protection officer in the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) office in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) extended his gratitude to the State of Qatar and the NHRC on hosting, organization and preparation for this important regional training workshop, praising the great attention given by the State of Qatar to the issues of immigrants and refugees through its various institutions, including charity ones. He commended in a press statement the great cooperation between the NHRC for the past five years, which has had a significant impact on the spreading the awareness on refugee affairs and their suffering.
The second and final day of the regional workshop on the legal prospects for asylum several working papers were discussed, including the principle of “non-refoulement”, presented by Dr. Yousif Al Daradkeh.

Al Daradkeh explained in his paper the resources of international law relating to the principle of non-refoulement, stressing that Non-refoulement is a key facet of refugee law, that concerns the protection of refugees from being returned or expelled to places where their lives or freedoms could be threatened. He stressed that The principle of “non-refoulement” was officially enshrined in the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and is also contained in the 1967 Protocol and Art 3 of the 1984 UN Torture Convention.

Mr. Saher Mohiuddin, protection officer in the UNHCR office in Kuwait presented another working paper on the legal prospects of the regional national framework for asylum, where Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948 were discussed, pointing out that the Arab countries did not participate in the preparation of this announcement because most of which were under the yoke of colonialism in the course of its drafting.

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The regional workshop entitled “Legal prospects for asylum” was launched in December 22, 2014, It was organized by the National […]

The regional workshop entitled “Legal prospects for asylum” was launched in December 22, 2014, It was organized by the National Human Rights Committee in cooperation with the regional Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees at the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

Mrs. Maryam bint Abdullah Al-Attiyah, Secretary-General of the National Human Rights Committee, in a speech which Mr. Jaber Al Hwail Director of the Legal Affairs at the NHRC gave on her behalf at the opening of the training workshop, mentioned that the international community had sought to regulate the right to shelter through the issuance and approval of numerous international declarations and conventions, including the United Nations Convention on the Status of Refugees of 1951, 1967 Protocol and 1969 OAU Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems, The Arab League Extradition Agreement that was approved by the Council of the League of Arab States on September 14,1952.

Al-Attiyah stressed that the importance of the subject of this symposium especially in light of the increasing number of refugees in the Arab and Islamic countries in recent years as a result of global and regional developments in the region, which requires international cooperation and activation of legitimacy and legal provisions related to the right of asylum. convening this regional workshop came to consolidate, develop and integrate all aspects of cooperation and joint action in order to effectuate the cooperation agreement signed in 2012 between the NHRC and regional office of the UNHCR in the areas of exchange of experiences and the development of national capacity. this regional two-day workshop addresses several important issues relating to Refugees affairs in the International, regional and national legal frameworks, asylum in Islam in the light of the International Bill of Human Rights, the principle of non-refoulement, the right of litigation, and other important topics.

Dr. Yousif Al Daradkeh, protection officer at the Regional office the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in the Gulf Cooperation Council commended the outstanding role played by the State of Qatar in terms of humanitarian and charity work at the national, regional and international levels. He extended thanks and gratitude to the State of Qatar, institutions and associations concerned with humanitarian support for refugees and immigrants, particularly for Syrians refugees and immigrants.

The workshop included sessions held during two days to familiarize participants with some comparative studies on the subject of asylum and general discussions; including the framework of international refugee law by Mr. Saher Mohiuddin, protection officer at the Regional Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Kuwait, in which he discussed international human rights law, international humanitarian law, common principles between them and the Convention 1951 status of Refugees and its provisions, objectives and definition of refugee protection laws, and the role of UNHCR.

Mr. Yousif Al Daradkeh presented a working paper entitled “A comparative study on Asylum in Islam” in which he discussed the right to shelter in Islam, conditions for granting asylum, the rules prescribed for the right to asylum in the Koran, including the measure of no expulsion or the principle of non-refoulement and the imposition of penalties on account of illegal entry or presence of a refugee who enters or is present in territories of states and other relevant topics.

Ms. Rania Fouad Abdul Hakim Jadallah, legal expert at the National Human Rights Committee, presented a working paper entitled “The role of civil society organizations in the protection of the rights of refugees”, she added that worldwide security and freedom in all its forms are considered one of the greatest challenges in the twentieth century, she discussed several points relating to the common lack of clarity in the legal status of the asylum seeker, their basic rights, including the principle of non-refoulement and other punitive measures in case of illegal entry or illegal residence in the State of the shelter.

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In the framework of the deployment of the human rights culture, the National Human Rights Committee implements organizes an educational […]

In the framework of the deployment of the human rights culture, the National Human Rights Committee implements organizes an educational project in collaboration with the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, targeting students of secondary schools. Sheikha Al Jawhara Mohammed Al Thani, director of program and education department, at the National Human Rights Committee stated that convening this project comes from the Committee’s strategy to promote the goals behind its establishment including the consolidation and dissemination of human rights culture in the community, the protection of human rights and the dissemination of educational awareness to students about their rights. She added that there are also a group of sub-objectives of the project which can be summarized as based on positive communication with students to hone their abilities and introduce their rights, in addition to preparation of cadres of students to participate and communicate with the NHRC, educating them how to express their opinions freely and communicate with each other, encountering the phenomenon of public violence, and encouraging students to participate in public life.
Sheikha Al Jawhara stated that the themes and programs of the project include working on the integration of educational guidelines in curriculum, as well as the deployment of culture of human rights among students, activating their participation with the NHRC through lectures introducing principles and concepts of human rights and protection mechanisms, preparation of a school wall magazine addressing human rights topics, In addition to the preparation and publication of articles on topics human rights, participation of the NHRC in the Student Parliament, introducing legal topics of interest to students, adopting graduation projects for some of the students by the NHRC, as well as the participation of students with a delegation of the Committee in international forums on discussing the state reports on human rights. The project seeks to form human rights groups at schools with the goal of defending the rights of students in particular and human rights in general and preparing periodic reports on the problems facing students inside or outside the school, allocation of a day in all schools known as “Human Rights Day” and allocating a period of time (an hour or two) of the school day to discuss human rights issues in which a lecture shall be given on the nature and culture of the Qatari society, conducting competitions in the field of human rights, conducting field visits to some government bodies to learn about practices for the promotion and protection of human rights including the National Human Rights committee, the Public Prosecution, courts, the Shura Council, and some security departments of the Ministry of Interior. The project also includes the establishment of an annual exhibition contains paintings related to human rights and displaying parts of the book of “human rights in Islam”; displaying cartons on human rights and the rights of the disabled, workers.
The project has begun on Sunday, November 30th, 2014  at Qatar Academy Secondary School, where Ms. Rania Fouad, legal expert at the NHRC gave a lecture on the definition of human rights and mandates of the NHRC. While Mr. Mo’men Al Dardiri, Legal Counsel at the NHRC gave a lecture on the right to justice. Lectures at Qatar Academy Secondary School shall be until Tuesday, December 2nd, 2012 on several issues including the right to identity and citizenship, the right to equality and non-discrimination and the right to work as well as the definition of the rights of the disabled persons.

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The National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) released two new guide books for education and healthcare centers in co-operation with the […]

The National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) released two new guide books for education and healthcare centers in co-operation with the Supreme Education Council and Supreme Council of Health.

Speaking at a press conference on Monday, author of the guides, Dr. Mohammed Saif al Kuwari said, “These guidelines further boost NHRC’s goals to protect human rights in Qatar. They elaborate an individual’s right to education and right to good health at education and healthcare centers; rights to education and health are enshrined in Articles 49 and 23 of the Permanent Constitution of the State of Qatar issued in 2004; the right to education leads to empowering and strengthening other rights, without proper education a person will neither know his/her rights, violations nor be able to defend them where the healthcare guide aims to monitor human rights related to health, identify infringements, violations, providing suggestions and assistance to solve them. Both guides have five chapters each that cover constitution, international conventions, laws, education and health systems, standards, services, safety and references. The right to education is guaranteed by all regional, international conventions, charters and treaties such as the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), Convention on the Rights of the Child, Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women.The education guide aims at setting conditions and standards for  the state of human rights related to ensuring the right to education in order to boost and protect them, the objective of the preparation of the guide is to take advantage of monitoring human rights situation in learning institution, as the targeted groups in the guide are students of all groups and various educational levels, the guide aims to set standards of human rights to ensure every citizen’s right to education according to applicable regulations and laws of the State, t endeavors to empower persons with disabilities to equally gain good and collective learning in the societies they live. Similarly, every member of the society has the right to receive the best quality of healthcare as per the Constitution of Qatar, Arab, regional and international conventions and charters. It should take into account a resident’s physical, mental and social conditions without delay or discrimination because of race, religion, or other such factors, the preamble of the guide to hospitals and healthcare centers says.”

The guide for human rights to education and learning centers came among several clues, including five chapters ,The first entry tackles education and human rights, The second is discussed in light of the educational guide according to the constitution in addition to the national, Arabic, and International laws, The third displays the educational system, The forth explains the educational set, and The fifth deals with indicators of education quality in regards of adopted international standards.

The guide for human rights to health, hospitals and healthcare centers came among several clues, including six chapters, The first chapter tackles Healthcare in the Constitution, National, Arab and International Conventions and Laws, The second is discussed of the health system, The third displays the Quality indicators of health services in accordance with accredited international standards, The forth explains the health service, The fifth deals with Safety of Patients in Hospitals, Healthcare and Medical Centers, and The sixth chapter deals with references.

Refuting the two guides would conflict with the two councils existing rules, Al Kuwari said, “the Supreme Education Council and Supreme Council of Health have reviewed and approved the guidelines. There is no conflict between their guidelines and NHRC guides.The NHRC has published both the guides in Arabic and English languages.”

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The National Human Rights committee represented by Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri, the chairman of the NHRC, participated at […]

The National Human Rights committee represented by Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri, the chairman of the NHRC, participated at the second session of the Global Forum for Human Rights, which is hosted by Morocco at Marrakech, with the participation of 94 countries and 5,000 participants as well 100 human rights institutions from around the world.

Dr. Al Marri presented a working paper at the forum as the president of the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions (APF) which discussed the initiative launched by the Forum since 2008 with the support of the International Coordinating Committee (ICC), on activating the role of national institutions in the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) which is one of the bodies and mechanisms of the United Nations, and an important hub for the subject of the meeting, which aims to focus on the efforts and achievements made by the national institutions with the United Nations General Assembly.

Al Marri stated that despite the importance of the role of national institutions in protecting and promoting the rights of women, NHRIs do not have standing in their own right to participate in meetings of the CSW and can only attend as part of their country’s government delegation, if they are invited, or if an invitation is not forthcoming, NHRIs may consider registering with an ECOSOC-accredited NGO (which have much more limited access than government representatives).  Neither option appropriately reflects the independent status of NHRIs, yet they are currently the only two available options. Consequently, NHRIs do not have their own separate accreditation badges, separate seating, nor can they submit documents or make oral interventions at CSW. On the contrary, NHRIs have independent participation status with other UN human rights bodies including all human rights treaty bodies and the Human Rights Council. That’s why Lobbying efforts by NHRIs come to request issuing a decision to allow NHRIs to participate in the CSW independently of governments.

Al Marri added that the participation of National Institutions accredited status(a) in the Commission on the Status of Women is of a great importance because NHRIs have an important and constructive role in addressing human rights violations and disseminating information in the field of human rights and education in the field of human rights of women and girls. In addition, participation of national institutions may bring more experience in the field of human rights to develop global policies in the framework of the Commission on the Status of Women, where National institutions can contribute to strengthening of the institutional links between national and international levels with respect to rights, gender equality and women’s empowerment, in addition to forming an important part of both the framework of national, regional and international institutional accountability mechanisms for the advancement of gender equality and women’s human rights and the national mechanism to move forward in the local implementation of the Beijing Declaration, Platform for Action and the decisions of the CSW.

Al Marri reviewed the achievements of the campaign involving CSW including higher rates of engagement by NHRIs; in 2008, one institution attended the CSW while 11 NHRIs attended in 2010; greater understanding among NHRIs of the role and functions of the CSW as a policy-making body; new relationships established between NHRIs and APF with United Nations officials, agencies and diplomats, successful advocacy for the inclusion of references to NHRIs into the Agreed Conclusions of CSW; strengthened and consolidated ICC engagement around the issue of women’s and girls’ human rights, including its decision to dedicate an ICC Conference on this issue held in November 2012 in Amman, Jordan; The conference adopted the Amman Declaration and Programme of Action on the rights of women and girls. The Declaration sets out the key principles for NHRIs. In the Amman Declaration and Programme of Action, national institutions agreed to continue to call for the independent participation of “A status” NHRIs of the Commission on the Status of Women of the United Nations.
Dr . Al Marri stressed the fact that the UN decisions and statements emphasize the active participation of national institutions with the United Nations bodies, and the need to grant NHRIs the rights to independent participation and stated that a lesson learned is that any concrete developments to provide the rights of participation of national institutions in the United Nations agencies based in New York, will depend on the decisions made in the General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council. As a result, the international coordinating body (ICC) should continue to focus its efforts towards dealing directly with the General Assembly, and at the same time, strengthen the role of national institutions in the relevant subsidiary bodies of the Economic and Social Council, including the Commission on the Status of Women, Working Group on strengthening the protection of the human rights of older persons, and Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Dr. Al Marri submitted 3 key recommendations for national institutions including NHRIs to attend annual meetings of the Commission on the Status of Women, and communicate with relevant ministries especially those ministries responsible for CSW such as departments of foreign affairs, women’s affairs or other for the inclusion of language that recognizes NHRIs as independent national mechanisms that have the mandate work to promote and protect the rights of women and girls, particularly in relation to violence against women and girls; NHRIs (whether attending meetings or not) should strongly encourage their governments to make a country statement at CSW 57 that recognizes the value of independent NHRI participation at CSW as well as their contribution in relation to combatting violence against women and girls; and NHRIs to attend meetings of the CSW should meet with UN Women, and other UN agencies to exchange information and discuss capacity building initiatives to advance cooperation with NHRIs in relation to the human rights of women and girls.

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