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IGAD Political Affairs Program (PAP) of the Peace and Security Division (PSD) concludes a 4-days training Workshop for National Human Right Institutions (NHRIs) of IGAD Member States, which was officially opened by the PSD Director, Hon. Siraj Fegessa, in Bishoftu, Ethiopia.

The objective of the workshop was to enhance the technical capacity of senior officials of the Member states’ National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) and provide the opportunity to enhance cooperation and collaboration among the institutions. Moreover, it aimed to draw lessons from good practices and challenges of one another in protecting and promoting the human rights of the citizens of the region; and share experiences on investigative and reporting skills when violations occur, among others.

With the facilitation of presentations, group discussions, and active participation of the representatives, topics covered included the International and the African Human Rights System, Interaction between Human Rights Law and International Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflict, Human Rights Promotion, and the role NHRIs in IGAD region, Responsibility to Protect, The Paris Principles, and elections and the role of NHRIs.

At the end of the training workshop, the 21 delegates, three from each member state comprised of leaders and senior officials of NHRIs of IGAD Member States, unanimously decided to establish a regional platform with the name ‘IGAD National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) Network.’ The Network, the delegates agreed, shall serve as a regional platform with which regular consultations and collaborations would be held. Details of the mandate of the Network shall be defined in the coming months by the MSs representatives NHRIs.

The Ethiopian NHRI (Ethiopian Human Rights Commission) took the initiative to facilitate the initial steps to convene the representatives IGAD NHRIs Network and support the process of operationalizing the Network. The Ugandan counterparts have also offered to complement the support with Ethiopia.

The workshop was conducted with financial support from the Government of Denmark under the Danish African Peace Program.


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