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Euro-Mediterranean human Rights Network (EMHRN)
History and Background

The EMHRN was born in 1997

1997: The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Network is founded during a meeting at the Danish Institute for Human Rights [1] in Copenhagen by a group of human rights activists from the North and the South of the Mediterranean.

Having followed closely the establishment of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, they believed it had the potential to make a positive impact on the region.

It was felt that creating a Network would significantly enhance human rights work by creating a civil society forum to bring the Barcelona Process forward and NGOs together across the region.

In December 1997, the Network Constitutive Assembly takes place in Copenhagen with representatives of 49 organisations from the Euro-Mediterranean region. The first Executive Committee is elected and initial statutes as well as an action plan are adopted.

1999: The Network co-organises the EuroMed Civil Forum in Stuttgart. This meeting is an important step for the Network as it provides the opportunity to establish its capacity to gather the EuroMed Human Rights community and to promote human rights within the Barcelona process.

2000: Another important step: The Network received an important European Union funding contract. On its fourth General Assembly in Marseille, a new action plan is adopted.

From 2000 to 2006: The Network multiplies its activities. It opens an office in Brussels, antennas in Rabat and Amman, publishes reports on the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, develops its strategy and diversifies its financing sources …

2007… (See here the images of the tenth anniversary)
Since its birth, the Network succeeded in establishing its credibility. The competence of the network is regularly recognized by the institutions.

The Network strengthened its influence on the political options concerning the Human rights at the regional level.

Multiple communications or recommendations of the European Parliament were directly inspired by work of the Network. Last example: The interministerial conference in Istanbul at the end of 2006, adopted a five-year plan for promotion of the role of the women in society which included proposals carried out by the Network…

Lastly, the existence of the Network stimulated the networking between members; It made it possible to protect members against arbitrary measures and organized several campaigns to support the release of imprisoned members….


1) Then the Danish Centre for Human Rights. Initiators were Morten Kjaerum and Said Essoulami. Participants were from the Arab Human Rights Institute; Danish Centre for Human Rights; Dutch Refugee Council; Egyptian Organisation for Human Rights; European Council on Refugees and Exiles; Euro-Mediterranean Institute for Migration and Asylum; French Human Rights League; Greek Committee for International Democratic Solidarity; Al Haq; Italian Helsinki Committee; Human Rights Centre Essex; Moroccan Human Rights Organisation; Aabo Akademi; Ms Saeda Kilani, Mr Saad Djebbar.

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