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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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A visiting delegation from the US Senate and the Department of Defense visited the National Human Rights Committee as part […]

A visiting delegation from the US Senate and the Department of Defense visited the National Human Rights Committee as part of visits to the State’s institutions.
A meeting was held between the delegation members and a number of the NHRC’s officials in which objectives and mandates of the NHRC were discussed together with the NHRC’s role in the dissemination and promotion of the human rights culture.

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The chairman of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), Dr. Ali bin Samikh Al Marri met Mr. Christophe Payot, Ambassador […]

The chairman of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), Dr. Ali bin Samikh Al Marri met Mr. Christophe Payot, Ambassador of Belgium to the State. During the meeting, they reviewed aspects of cooperation in issues of mutual concern and means of activating mechanisms of communication between the two sides in fields related to human rights.

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The chairman of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), Dr. Ali bin Samikh Al Marri met Linda Dixon, representative of […]

The chairman of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), Dr. Ali bin Samikh Al Marri met Linda Dixon, representative of the U.S. Department of Defense. During the meeting, they reviewed aspects of cooperation in issues of mutual concern and means of activating mechanisms of communication between the two sides in fields related to human rights.

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The National Human Rights Committee celebrated Qatar national Human Rights Day at the Cultural Village (Katara) with the participation of […]

The National Human Rights Committee celebrated Qatar national Human Rights Day at the Cultural Village (Katara) with the participation of a large number of the families of the NHRC’s staff and a number of government institutions, civil society organizations, communities, citizens and residents of the State of Qatar.
Ms. Maryam bint Abdullah Al-Attiyah, Secretary-General of the NHRC stated in her speech on the occasion of the national Human Rights Day that this day marks a turning point to elevate the culture of human rights and stress the values and traditions of respect for human rights in our beloved State, pointing out that the decree law on establishing the National Human Rights Committee reflects a long-term vision for the leadership of governance in our State after which major developments in human rights issues were achieved not only in Qatar but at the regional and international levels. She added that the National Human Rights Committee of the State of Qatar has gained a regional and international weight that grants it a strong voice in all the human affairs, where the institutional and independent work of the NHRC and its substantive initiatives allowed it to be an ideal model in the leading platforms in the field of human rights institutions.
Al-Attiyah stressed that every year witnesses new positive developments with regard to human rights, where the potential legislative amendments expected in the labor law, which was announced by Dr. Khalid Al-Attiyah, Minister of Foreign Affairs in May 2013 is a quantum leap in the way of the legislative development of the State and we hope to see these amendments light soon. She added that one of these developments is opening offices for communities of labor-exporting countries headquartered at the NHRC, this has contributed a lot in finding solutions to several issues and problems and facing challenges they may face them. Thanks to support for the principles of human rights by the state leadership, traditions and human tolerance in the State, the process of institutional advancement of human rights in the State of Qatar arose, which in turn facilitated our mission in disseminating the human rights culture that was respected in the Islamic law before the Western world put it in their constitutions and laws.

Al Attiyah extended congratulations on the occasion of the national day of human rights for the Emir, government, citizens and residents and stated that It is the right of everyone living in this land to live with dignity, this is what our ancestors taught us before we know books and international laws, and what our government is keen to under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the Emir of Qatar and His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani.
Mr. Abdullah Al-Mahmoud, head of the Public Relations and Media unit, stated that we are keen to celebrate with the public in the cultural village (Katara). This year, we have several official participants from the Ministry of Social Affairs, The Productive families Development Department, the Childhood Cultural Center and Audio Education complex, number of participants reached more than 300 persons and the event included distribution of leaflets that define the activities and objectives of the NHRC and human rights in general.

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The Chairman of Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee (QNHRC), Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al-Marri described recommendations of the International Conference […]

The Chairman of Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee (QNHRC), Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al-Marri described recommendations of the International Conference on the challenges to security and human rights in the Arab region as successful . He noted that the recommendations will be submitted to the HE the Prime Minister and Interior Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al-Thani, the sponsor of the conference in addition to the partners including QNHR, council of Arab interior ministers, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR), the Arab Network for National Human Rights Institutions and the Arab League General Secretariat.
He described Doha conference as the first one of its kind in the region which brought together national human rights institutions, civil society organizations and those in charge of law enforcement and security agencies a matter which he said would lead to more coordination , cooperation and joint action between these parties   At conclusion of the conference, Al-Marri thanked participants for their active , positive efforts and discussions that led to the success of the conference.
Meanwhile , the Secretary-General of Arab Interior Ministers Council, Dr. Mohammed bin Ali Kuman stressed that the conference was an opportunity to strengthen cooperation between the General Secretariat of Arab Interior Ministers council and participants, saying that human rights’ principles and morals are an integral part of the Islamic religion and therefore no one can accept any rights may be contradicted with the Islamic religion .
Arab League Assistant Secretary General Ambassador Wajih Hanafi stressed the importance of such conferences in order to build confidence, noting that such a conference shows keenness on enhancing cooperation between security institutions and those concerned with human rights.
Furthermore, the Arab Network for National Human Rights Institutions Chairman Mohamed Fayek said that Doha conference was an advent for dialogue between non-governmental organizations and security institutions, praising role and efforts being exerted by the national institutions for human rights in order to fulfill human rights.
For his part, Head of the Middle East and North Africa Department at the UN High Commission for Human Rights Faraj Fneish announced readiness of the commission to cooperate with all parties and to help the Arab countries to meet their obligations towards protecting and promoting human rights .He called for more cooperation among the Arab region and international organizations concerned with human rights, stressing the importance of preparing a comprehensive Arab strategy on human rights.

Participants emphasized in the final statement that terrorism has a negative long-term impact on the community, where it destabilizes governments, undermines civil society, threatens peace, security, and economic and social development, which seriously affect the enjoyment of human rights. Maintaining security at the individual and collective levels, as a basic human right, is one of the most critical roles entrusted to states. Accordingly, States should take all necessary measures to achieve security in the framework of the rule of law and respect for human rights as stipulated in the relevant international conventions. Protection of human rights does not necessarily weaken national security, and security measures do not necessarily lead to diminution of human rights. The United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy that adopted the human rights and the rule of law as their substantial basis, should provide a frame of reference for Arab countries to take advantage of it in their efforts to combat terrorism. It is not permissible to link terrorism with any religion, nationality, civilization or ethnic group.
Conference recommendations stressed that States shall establish oversight and accountability mechanisms to prevent any possibility of exploiting the powers of law enforcement authorities in taking arbitrary measures against individuals or groups. States are urged to respect the Universal Declaration on the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, respect and protect journalists, prevent and end torture, call upon States that have prisoners of conscience to be released, including advocates and defenders of human rights, strengthen the independence of the judiciary and the transparency of legal proceedings, respect international standards for fair trial and fight against corruption. States are urged to adopt and implement measures to ensure compliance with the principles of the rule of law, equality before the law without discrimination, and avoid arbitrariness. States are urged to harmonize national agreements and covenants relating to security and human rights with international standards and urge states that have not yet done so, to accede to relevant international conventions, particularly the Convention against Torture and its optional Protocol, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. States are also urged to cooperate with the UN special procedures of the Human Rights Council and with the contractual mechanisms, and encourage States to carry out reforms in the judiciary and the security sector, whenever necessary, encourage ongoing and regular dialogue between security institutions, civil society organizations and national human rights institutions, and consider the establishment of a mechanism, wherever conditions exist for it, for cooperation between them in order that the security measures are compatible with international human rights standards and with what came in the UN Code of conduct for law enforcement officials for the year 1979.
Finally, participants expressed their gratitude to the State of Qatar, the National Human Rights Committee in Qatar, the Arab League, the Council of Arab Interior Ministers and the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Arab Network of National Human Rights Institutions for their efforts to organize the conference and invite them to continue to work with relevant parties to implement the recommendations that were approved.

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