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Amnesty International today confirmed that recent humanitarian measures by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Bahrain are vague and insufficient and […]

Amnesty International today confirmed that recent humanitarian measures by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Bahrain are vague and insufficient and do not address the human rights situation. This came during a meeting between His Excellency Dr. Ali Bin Samikh Al Marri, President of the National Human Rights Committee of the State of Qatar and His Excellency Mr. Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International at the organization’s headquarters in London. The meeting discussed the repercussions of the siege imposed on the State of Qatar, the serious violations of international human rights law and the violation of the basic rights of Gulf and Qatari citizens.

Mr Shetty condemned the violations, stressing that Amnesty International would continue to work with all concerned parties to reach a resolution.

The Secretary-General stressed that recent measures taken by the states enforcing the siege to address its repercussions on ordinary families were inadequate, vague, and lacking in mechanisms. He said the rights of these families must be restored in full to all those affected, not only those chosen as exceptions, and that these are basic human rights that cannot be fragmented.

The meeting between Amnesty and NHRC followed Amnesty’s earlier visit to Doha to examine complaints received by the NHRC. The number of Qatari and Gulf citizens affected has now reached more than 700 cases.

During his visit to London, HE Dr. Ali Bin Samikh Al Marri held several meetings with relevant organizations, human rights figures and international lawyers. He met with officials from the International Federation of Journalists and discussed the effects of the siege on freedom of opinion and expression and the rights of journalists. The meeting dealt with the severe penalties faced by Gulf citizens in the boycotting countries should they express sympathy for the State of Qatar, as well as a crackdown in those countries on journalists and online activists who criticise the blockade.

The IFJ expressed its deep condemnation of this harassment which restricted the right to freedom of opinion and expression, and stressed the need to intervene quickly to stop the arbitrary measures that have resulted in the blocking of satellite channels, and the closing the offices of Aljazeera – a clear violation of freedom of opinion and expression and the right to information. The meeting also discussed the ‘terrorism list’ produced by the same countries, which includes a number of individuals and institutions

Dr. Al Marri asked all media organisations and press freedom NGOs to take urgent action to defend the rights of journalists and protect freedom of opinion and expression. He stressed the need to intensify efforts to expose the human rights violations resulting from the siege of Qatar.

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The National Human Rights Committee of the State of Qatar has dismissed the recent directives issued by the Kingdom of […]

The National Human Rights Committee of the State of Qatar has dismissed the recent directives issued by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and the Kingdom of Bahrain regarding the humanitarian situation of mixed-citizenship families. It views their actions as little more than a face-saving measure.

The NHRC says the directives remain too vague to have any practical impact and are void of a mechanism to be of assistance to those affected. It adds that while the directives make reference to considering the humanitarian situation, they provide no solution to the serious legal and human rights issues that have resulted from the arbitrary measures imposed by Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain on the State of Qatar, which are in violation of all humanitarian norms, charters and principles, and constitute international human rights crimes. The Committee considers the recent directives as a public relations exercise in damage control, following huge international outcry over the blockade and its impact.

The NHRC adds that the the siege of Qatar is not only a gross violation of the rights of Gulf citizens (both Qatari and non-Qatari), but also the rights of expat residents in the State of Qatar.

The blockade of Qatar has trampled over a wide range of civil, economic social and cultural rights. The right to movement and residence, the right to private property, freedom of opinion and expression, the right to religious freedom, the right to work, the right to education, and the right to health have all been seriously damaged.

Families have been split apart, livelihoods are being lost, and the academic prospects of students are being destroyed.

The Committee also notes a serious attack on press freedoms and freedoms of opinion and expression in the states enforcing the blockade, where any expression of sympathy towards Qatar has been criminalised. Those who object to the arbitrary and illegal measures taken by their governments face huge financial penalties and lengthy prison sentences.

The NHRC has been documenting and reporting on the tragic humanitarian cases resulting from the blockade, and the traumatic psychological effect it is having on citizens and residents in the Gulf as a whole.

The Committee insists it will continue to perform according to its mandate of protecting, promoting and consolidating the rights and freedoms of those affected in the GCC, and will continue to document and report on all human rights violations, and raise complaints to international bodies and organisations.

Finally, the NHRC reminds the three States enforcing the blockade that they must shoulder full responsibility for the resulting damage to lives and property in accordance to international norms and principles and their obligations under international human rights treaties. They must take immediate measures to stop all human rights violations, lift the siege imposed on the State of Qatar, and alleviate the suffering of the Gulf people

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(Text of the Statement) The National Human Rights Committee of the State of Qatar has been briefed on the report […]

(Text of the Statement)

The National Human Rights Committee of the State of Qatar has been briefed on the report of Al-Arabiya TV on 5 June 2017 that The organizers of the International Conference on Human Rights Approaches to Conflict Situations in the Arab Region, held in Doha on 20-21 February 2017, that the human rights organizations of Qatar and Iran direct accusations to Saudi Arabia and the Arab Coalition for supporting the legitimate Government of the country.

In response to these claims of a channel claiming professionalism, the above-mentioned international conference was organized by the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Secretariat General of the Council of Arab Ministers of the Interior, the Arab Maghreb Union, the Arab Parliament, the National Human Rights Committee of Qatar and the Arab Network for NHRIs, with the participation of 320 international, regional and national organizations in the field of human rights and representatives of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and the Ministries of the Interior in 18 countries, including the representatives of the governments of the GCC countries, where the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia participated with a delegation led by the President of the Saudi Commission for Human Rights and the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Interior, as well as for the UAE with the participation of representatives of the government and civil society organizations such as the UAE Society for Human Rights, The Emirates Association for Lawyers and Jurists, the Dubai Foundation for Women and Children’s Welfare and the Arab Federation for Human Rights, while the Kingdom of Bahrain participated with a delegation of organizations accredited in Bahrain, headed by the National Foundation for Human Rights, The Arab representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the President of the National Council for Human Rights. However, Iran have not participated in the conference as alleged by the report.

The aim of the conference was to discuss the various roles played by NHRIs in the prevention, protection and resolution of conflicts; and the conference was not directed against any country in any of the discussions or side meetings and the best evidence of the effectiveness of the Conference is its recommendations that have been adopted unanimously.

The National Human Rights Committee of the State of Qatar has been entrusted with organizing such an annual conference to serve our Arab issues in fruitful cooperation with the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the League of Arab States, the Gulf Cooperation Council, the Arab Parliament and the General Secretariat of the Council of Arab Ministers of the Interior.

Doha 06/06/2017

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Under the patronage of His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, the […]

Under the patronage of His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, the National Human Rights Committee of the State of Qatar and the High Commissioner for Human Rights organize the “International conference on Human rights- based approach to conflict situations in the Arab region”, in Sheraton Doha Hotel during the period from 20 to 21 February, 2017, In collaboration with the General Secretariat of the Council of Arab Interior Ministers and the Arab Network for National Human Rights Institutions and under honorary sponsorship of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf, Arab Maghreb Union and the Arab Parliament.

The Conference will bring together 220 participants including government officials, representatives from United Nations peacekeeping missions, international, regional government and non-governmental organizations, and human rights institutions, policy researchers, experts from treaty bodies, UN special rapporteurs, and representatives from offices of the High commissioner for Human Rights in the Arab region.

Ms. Maryam bint Abdullah Al-Attiyah, Secretary-General of NHRC stated that The conference aims to promote the Human rights approach in addressing conflict situations and crises, identify human rights- based early warning mechanisms, promote platforms for dialogue with a view to preventing crises situations from degenerating into armed conflicts, provide redress for addressing human rights concerns, develop comprehensive and inclusive human rights-based post-conflict strategies, and map good practices and emerging initiatives in the area of cooperation between international human rights mechanisms, peacekeeping missions and civil society; pointing out that several working papers shall be presented at all sessions and workshops; The Conference will be delivered in 2 languages (Arabic and English) and interpretation will also be provided.
Al Attiyah said that the conference will be divided into two parts, the first part is dedicated to Interactive Debates including interactive dialogue on the integration of policies and human rights strategies in the global United Nations strategies on tackling extremism, anti-terrorism, and peace keeping processes. The first day of the conference will discuss Respecting Human Rights As a Preventive Approach and Assessing Human Rights Violations in Conflict Situations from NGO’s perspective. Al-Attiyah said: The second part will consist of four working groups on the integration of human rights-based tools and mechanisms in the processes of conflict prevention, coordination of the joint efforts of the United Nations, national human rights institutions and civil society in dealing with conflict situations, analysis of the impact of conflict on human rights, implementation of the peace agreements, and reforms based on human rights. Working groups will also discuss “Protection of Women Children and Minorities in Conflict Situation”, and the impact of armed conflict on the enjoyment of the right to education.
Al Attiyah added that is the idea of organizing this international conference on this important theme comes as a result of the events that began in 2011 in the Middle East and North Africa overlapping armed conflicts in which a number of simultaneous and overlapping armed conflicts have shaken the regions status quo, exacerbated internal and regional divisions and profoundly worsened the overall level of violence. In the face of such dramatic developments, it is timely and important for regional bodies, governmental and nongovernmental bodies and conflicting parties, to come together around basic human rights norms and develop a regional approach to prevention and management of conflict situations.

Al Attiyah added, In a conflict situation, international human rights law and international humanitarian law share the goal of preserving the dignity and humanity of all. Noting that The Security Council, the General Assembly, the Commission on Human Rights and, more recently, the Human Rights Council have clearly stated that in armed conflict, parties to the conflict have legally binding obligations concerning the rights of persons affected by the conflict, where International human rights law protects people at all times, whether during peacetime or conflict, while international humanitarian law operates during periods of armed conflict and provides specific protection to civilians and persons no longer participating directly in hostilities and active participants in the conflict.

Al Attiyah stressed that Indeed, as has been recognized by international and regional courts, as well as by United Nations organs, treaty bodies and human rights special procedures, both bodies of law apply to situations of armed conflict and provide complementary and mutually reinforcing protection.

Al Attiyah commended the cooperation between NHRC and the High Commissioner for Human Rights Over the past five years, which resulted in organizing annual large-scale conferences, The theme of the 2015 conference was human rights and security challenges in the Arab region, with an overall objective of discussing the relationship between maintaining security and respect for human rights while considering the basic responsibilities of the states. The 2016 conference provided the opportunity to discuss the role of OHCHR in the Arab region. Participants made a number of recommendations addressed to OHCHR and other UN agencies, governments, national human rights organizations and civil society.

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The National Human Rights Committee welcomed the cooperation with the office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. Dr. Ali […]

The National Human Rights Committee welcomed the cooperation with the office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri, Chairman of the NHRC met with Mr. Mohammed Ali Al Nosor, Director of the Middle East and North Africa division of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Office in Geneva in the presence of the new Director of the United Nations Centre for training and documentation, Mr. George Abu Zalf. Al Marri stated that it is time for cooperation and organization of workshops and training courses, especially in the presence of the Arab network for national human rights institutions and Doha sub-regional Office for the APF. The two sides also reviewed the challenges facing the Arab world and which national institutions and governments are keen to address and solve.

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The training course on the regional and international mechanisms on the promotion and protection of human, that was organized in […]

The training course on the regional and international mechanisms on the promotion and protection of human, that was organized in Bahrain at the Cultural Center in Bahrain, in cooperation with Bahrain Center for Human Rights in the period from 16 to18 May, 2016, concluded today.

Ms. Maryam bint Abdullah Al-Attiyah, Secretary-General of the NHRC stressed the need to boost cooperation with national human rights institutions in the Arab countries in general, and GCC countries in particular, through capacity building and transfer of expertise. Al-Attiyah said It is our pleasure to participate in the ceremony of the conclusion of the training course on the regional and international mechanisms on the promotion and protection of human, that was organized in collaboration with Bahrain Center for Human Rights, in the framework of the joint keenness on building and strengthening capacity in the field of human rights. Al-Attiyah added: I would like to extend our sincere thanks and appreciation to the national human rights institution in the Kingdom of Bahrain for the warm reception, organizing this course.

Ms. Maryam bint Abdullah Al-Attiyah, Ms. Jameela Ali Salman Nasaif, Commissioner Head of Committee on Civil and Political Rights and Dr. Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Director of Eissa cultural Center distributed the certificates of participation for 115 participants including representatives of Bahraini civil society institutions, where participants praised the course and the importance of the themes that enrich their experiences in various fields of human rights.

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Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri, Chairman of the NHRC met in his office at the headquarters of the NHRC, […]

Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri, Chairman of the NHRC met in his office at the headquarters of the NHRC, with HE Ambassador of the Republic of Kenya to Qatar, Mr. Muka Jalma Borough. The meeting discussed ways of joint cooperation in various human rights areas and mechanisms to bridge the communication between both sides.

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The meeting chaired by Mr. Sultan bin Hassan Al Jamali, Assistant Secretary-General of the NHRC. Al Jamali gave the delegation […]

The meeting chaired by Mr. Sultan bin Hassan Al Jamali, Assistant Secretary-General of the NHRC. Al Jamali gave the delegation a detailed explanation about the terms of reference of the NHRC, pointing out that the NHRC is has an advisory role; it communicates state authorities and submits recommendations.

Al Jamali gave a brief on the various departments pointing out that the Department of Legal Affairs is responsible for receiving petitions and complaints related to human rights.  the NHRC also conducts 2 annual campaigns to spread the culture of human rights in all areas including health, education and workers’ rights.
In response to a question on the petitioners access means to the NHRC, Al Jamali pointed out that filing a complaint can be through via Fax, 24/7 hotline, e-mail or by personal attendance. The NHRC has also launched  communities offices for the African, Indian, Nepalese, Filipino communities to facilitate means of communication between the NHRC and petitioners.

The delegation members commend on the efforts made by the NHRC in the field of human rights, which reflects its transparency and credibility. The delegation asked several questions related to the work of the Committee, its roles, responsibilities and vision.

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The NHRC held the fourth meeting with representatives of offices of the communities, employers and managers of enterprises in Qatar […]

The NHRC held the fourth meeting with representatives of offices of the communities, employers and managers of enterprises in Qatar to discuss the implementation and functioning of the Wage Protection Law; the meeting was chaired by Mr. Jaber Al Huwail, Director of the Legal Affairs department at the NHRC with the participation of representatives of the Nepalese and Sri Lankan, Bengali and Philippine communities in addition to representative of Caravan Company and volunteers from Qatar and Georgetown Universities.

The meeting discussed the challenges facing the relationship between workers and employers, ways to better communication between both sides through technology and the possibility of creating an electronic application to help workers at Caravan company.

The NHRC leads this initiative in cooperation with the US Labor Solidarity Center and CH2M Contracting Co., in the framework of the mandate of the NHRC on Business and Human Rights, and corporate social responsibility.

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Doha is hosting a regional conference on the role of the High Commissioner in promoting human rights in the Arab […]

Doha is hosting a regional conference on the role of the High Commissioner in promoting human rights in the Arab region

Under the patronage of His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, the National Commission for Human Rights and the High Commissioner for Human Rights organized in cooperation with the Arab League and the Arab Network of National Institutions for Human Rights, based in Doha, a regional conference on “UNHCR’s role in the promotion and protection Human Rights in the Arab region. ”
It focuses overall objective of the conference which will be held on Wednesday and Thursday at Ritz Carlton Hotel, on the definition of the extent of the international system of human rights technical and organizational its components for the promotion and respect of human rights in the Arab region in response, as well as the review of approaches of relevant United Nations system of human rights, especially the role of the High Commissioner in the promotion and protection of human rights in the context of the current situation in the Arab region and how to develop ways of mechanisms of the treaty bodies of the United Nations, as well as monitor the implementation of the UPR recommendations.
A particular objective of the conference as well as view the status of cooperation between the Arab countries and the mechanisms of the United Nations human rights and the exchange of lessons learned and good practices in this regard, as well as discuss and find a common understanding on some related to human rights in the region priorities, including freedom of expression, association and education in the field of human rights and address the fundamental problems of human rights in the region in the context of wars and conflicts, as well as to support the Commission’s efforts to protect and promote human rights in the Arab region.
The conference will serve as a platform for interactive dialogue about the roles and achievements and progress, best practices and expectations of the various stakeholders in relation to the promotion and protection of human rights in the Arab region, and is also a strong chance to discuss the Commission’s plans in the region and push forward structural reforms within the Commission announced by the High Commissioner for Human Rights in his first speech to the Human Rights Council late last year.
It also provides a platform to look at many issues, including Arab member states cooperate with the United Nations human rights system, including the Commission, and stand on the status of ratification of the core human rights treaties and to participate in this regard with the International Organization including the bodies established human rights mechanisms under the treaties and procedures for the implementation of the UPR recommendations.
Participants in the conference, the first of its kind in the region, about 200 Arab and international human rights organization and more than 40 people responsible for human rights files on the level of world and Arab ambassadors, the UNHCR High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the offices of the Regional Commission in all of Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq, Yemen, Libya and Geneva and 17 Ministry Foreign and Arab human rights offices where human rights commissions or legal committees in parliaments and consultative councils in the Arab region and human rights non-governmental organizations and regional and international Cooperation Council for the Arab Gulf States, the Arab League and the Arab Network of National Institutions for Human Rights, and a range of special features and bodies of international treaties, a large number of Arab and international personalities headed by HRH Prince Zeid Ra’ad High Commissioner for Human Rights.
And it confirms convening this important Doha extensive and distinguished in which participation by the UNHCR and international human rights organizations to the conference, on the big international confidence in Qatar and its role in promoting human rights system and consolidation rather than on the local level but also on the Arab, regional and global level.
Also emphasizes this outstanding participation, the success of the National Committee for Human Rights in the collection of all these actors, experts and personalities involved, in this great humanitarian event in light of the ability of large and efforts made to meet and achieve the desired goals to take place in Doha.
And it includes the Regional Conference on “UNHCR’s role in the promotion and protection of human rights in the Arab region”, topics concerned with dialogue participatory about the role and activities of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the cooperation of Arab states with international and regional human rights mechanisms with the presentation of the best experiences on the partnership between the Commission and regional organizations in sessions axes World.
And will discuss these themes and sessions, a number of working papers, including the High Commissioner’s role in the Arab world, especially its presence field and the role of the United Nations Centre for Training and Documentation for South-West Asia and the Arab region, based in Doha, and to develop ways to provide and exchange information in the field of human rights through modern technology and strategy for human rights in the Arab region next to the introduction of both the Arab League and the European Union, the African Union and the Organization of American States worksheets.
As the complexity within events workshops on the High Commissioner for Human Rights response in the Arab region in particular through the UN mechanisms for protection in addition to the workshop entitled “some of the problems facing human rights in this region and the other on the aspirations of the national human rights institutions, competent and official departments of these rights and civil society in Arab region of the role of the High Commissioner for Human Rights “.
It will be the recommendations that will come out of the conference, a prominent role in achieving its mission of promoting human rights in the Arab region, note that will result from the conference especially Arab governments and others concerned with the role of UNHCR in the region and the role of the competent civil society organizations in the promotion and dissemination of culture of human rights recommendations.
These recommendations will also serve as a way for the work of the High Commissioner for Human Rights during the next phase in the Arab region map.
The Supreme Preparatory Committee of the Conference held a meeting in Geneva recently which discussed the final arrangements for the conference and general goals from behind.
The committee also discussed at its overall objective of the conference and special objectives that fall under the overall objective, such as view the status of cooperation between the Arab countries and the mechanisms of the United Nations human rights and other matters such as encouraging Arab countries to promote the ratification of the United Nations human rights treaties and the consolidation of its involvement with the mechanisms and exchange views on relevant good practice in the region, in addition to creating an effective partnership between the various parties concerned in the region.

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