On Tuesday morning, 4 October 2011, the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights opened a training workshop for lawyers on economic, social, and cultural rights and their protection mechanisms.
The workshop is being held at the Laterna restaurant in Gaza City.
This is the second workshop in a series of training events which are part of a joint project run by Al Mezan Centre with support from the Friedrich Ebert Foundation.
The project aims to bolster economic, social, and cultural rights in the Gaza Strip.
Al Mezan’s director, Mr.
Issam Younis, opened the workshop by welcoming the participants and thanking them for their attendance.
He emphasized the significant role played by lawyers in Palestinian society, given their dealings with the justice system and their capacity to spread awareness of human rights principles and values, including economic, social, and cultural rights.
Younis explained that Al Mezan monitors the human rights situation in Gaza in the context of the critical current phase of the Palestinian situation, adding that lawyers play a very active role in efforts aiming to provide legal protection for vulnerable populations.
Nour Ash-Shawa, the projects coordinator at Al Mezan, stressed the importance to the participants of gaining a deeper understanding of the issues raised in the workshop, especially considering lawyers’ potentially vital role in securing respect and protection for the economic, social, and cultural rights of the Gazan population.
She thanked the participants and the trainers, and emphasized the importance of positive interaction between them in order to ensure that the participants would benefit from the workshop and its content.
She urged the participants to make use of the workshop’s content in their own work.
The workshop consists of ten training hours, to be delivered over two days.
The participants will be introduced to: economic, social, and cultural rights; the basic principles and content of these rights, with the right to health as a case study; and protection mechanisms for these rights.
It also includes a session on UN human rights mechanisms, including the system of special procedures for human rights interventions.
On the first day, Dr.
Bassam Abu Hasheesh will present an introduction to the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights and particularly the right to enjoy the highest attainable standard of health.
On the second day, Mr.
Saber An-Nairab, Human Rights Officer at the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, will lead a session on the UN’s human rights mechanisms.