Today, 23 October 2007, Al Mezan Center received a delegation from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) at the Center's office in Gaza City.
Receiving the delegation was Mr.
Issam Younis, the Center's Director, and other Staff members.
The delegation encompassed Mr.
Walter Fust, Director-General of SDC, Mr.
Ambuehl Hansjuerg, the Director of the Middle East and North Africa Department, Mr.
Mario Careera, the Director of SDC's Jerusalem Office, and Mr.
Mazin Shaqoura, the Director of SDC's Gaza office.
Younis welcomed the delegation in Gaza and praised their visit at this particularly difficult time.
He introduced the mission and work of Al Mezan Center towards promoting respect and protection for human rights in OPT.
He also briefed the delegation about the current human rights situation in the Gaza Strip.
He described the situation as the lowest ever in Gaza owing to the vast violations Gazans experiences every day.
In particular, Mr.
Younis raised the concerns about the implications of Israel's closures and collective punishment measures, which infringe upon all aspects of life in Gaza.
In addition, he briefed the delegation on the daily violations that Gazans are subjected to owing to the deterioration of the economy, internal violence as well as the wide-spread arrest and torture on political grounds; issues that violate human rights standards and Al Mezan monitors and works against continuously.
Fust said that SDC follows the situation in Gaza and the violations that affects its population closely.
He added that SDC appeals for all parties to respect the life, dignity, and human rights of all people.
He also said that the Swiss Ministry of Foreign Affairs has developed a legal position regarding the freedom of movement based on the provisions of international law, and passed it to the Palestinian Authority's President.
SDC is committed to this position and appeals to all parties to respect the rules of international law, he added.
Fust said that SDC hopes that the life of Palestinians in OPT will improve so that peace and prosperity for all parties have a better chance in the soon future.