After the launch of CT PHARE – Counter-Terrorism Platform for Human Rights Engagement in March 2023, the new global facility has implemented its first Capacity Building Activity on the roles and responsibilities of Oversight and Accountability Mechanisms in countering terrorism.
From the 6th to 8th June in Nairobi, the CT PHARE team welcomed more than 30 high-level practitioners from oversight and accountability mechanisms – National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs), Ombusdmen and Police complaints authorities –, as well as Judiciary, Prosecutor, Law Enforcement, Bar Association and Civil Society Organisations from Egypt, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, and Uganda. It was also an honour to welcome experts from the African Center for the Study and Research on Terrorism of the African Union Commission, the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate of the Security Council, the Danish Institute for Human Rights and the Network of African National Human Rights Institutions.
CT PHARE is generously funded by the service for Foreign Policy Instruments (FPI) of the European Commission. The Deputy Head of the European Delegation, Ms. Katrin Hagemann, was present to officially launch the Capacity Building Activity, together with the Senior Legal Advisor from the National Counter Terrorism Centre in Kenya.
This three-day activity consisted of working sessions and interactive discussions to identify gaps, vulnerabilities and good practices in the promotion and protection of human rights in the context of counter-terrorism operations in the ten above-mentioned North, East and West Anglophone African countries.
The expected outcomes of the activity were:
- Increased understanding among participants on how to address gaps and vulnerabilities in their national response to human rights violations in the context of counter-terrorism operations.
- Increased sharing of good practices and experiences among NHRIs/Ombudsman Institutions in compliance with the UN Paris Principles.
- Strengthened collaboration between and among the NHRIs, civil society organisations and the judiciary regarding the promotion and protection of human rights.
- A formulation of a set of recommendations, through establishing a guideline on how to strengthen the role of oversight and accountability mechanisms in the field of counter-terrorism.
The same activity will be replicated with Francophone African countries later in the year.
During interviews conducted with several of the participants, they all appreciated the opportunity given to them for learning more from other CT Practitioners on improving oversight and accountability mechanisms and highlighted how the recommendations which will be developed are going to greatly assist them with their work in the area of human rights and counter-terrorism.