Support to Israeli and Palestinian HR/IHL CSOs

Project completed

Switzerland, through SDC, will support Palestinian and Israeli human rights and humanitarian law organizations active in the oPt as part of its engagement to contribute to a just and lasting peace and to the establishment of an independent, viable and democratic State of Palestine. The promotion of HR and IHL is a major concern in the oPt and a goal of Switzerland’s foreign policy.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Occupied Palestinian Territory
Human rights
Humanitarian Assistance & DRR
Human rights (incl. Women's rights)
Protection, access & security
Sexual & gender-based violence
01.05.2018 - 31.12.2020
CHF  5’945’000
Background With over five decades of Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territory (the West Bank including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip), more than ten years of closure of the Gaza Strip, persistent intra-Palestinian divide and growing shrinking democratic spaces, respect for international human rights law (IHRL) and international humanitarian laws (IHL) in the oPt and accountability for violations is deeply challenged.
Objectives To contribute to promoting accountability and respect for human rights and international humanitarian law in the oPt with evidence based reporting, legal aid and advocacy efforts of capacitated HR/IHL civil society organizations.
Target groups

Duty bearers: Israel, Palestinian Authority, de facto Authority in Gaza. 

Other stakeholders: Israeli, Palestinian and international NGOs, local and international media outlets, the UN Agencies in oPt and Member States.

Medium-term outcomes
  • Protection: Quality legal and social services are provided to the victims, who are protected from further violations, in particular the most vulnerable (women, children, prisoners, farmers and herders in Area C, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem).
  • Advocacy: The respect of Human Rights and IHL is monitored, awareness about violations is raised at the local and international levels and duty bearers are faced with their responsibilities.

Expected results:  

  • Legal cases are prepared, submitted and followed up.
  • Publications of important research, briefs, reports, position papers, press releases.
  • Dialogue with third party representations at local and capital level. Bilateral and multilateral meetings held.
  • Monitoring, documentation and reporting on Palestinian acceded treaties and conventions including level of alignment of local laws with international standards and/or violations.
  • Number of policies, regulations and laws impacting Palestinian women are reviewed based on acceded treaties, advocated for and adopted at national level.

Results from previous phases:  

  1. Provision of legal aid to Palestinians and Palestine refugees in West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza Strip.
  2. Several Palestinian partner HR CSOs successfully contributed to the adoption of participatory budgeting processes by the Palestinian Ministry of Social Affairs and the Ministry of Economy.
  3. A broad coalition of partner women HR CSOs including WCLAC and MIFTAH presented joint submissions and a shadow report on CEDAW (Oct. 2017).
  4.  Capacities of partner CSOs to deliver high quality monitoring and reporting on human rights and IHL violations have been significantly enhanced.
  5. Created platforms for exchanges between HR/IHL CSOs and donors, enhanced collaboration with local and international networks around key issues of concerns and potential joint actions.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
International or foreign NGO
  • SDC Field Office
  • Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel; Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association; AL Dameer Association for Human Rights Gaza; HaMoked – Center for the Defense of the Individual; The Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy – MIFTAH; Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) Gaza; Physicians for Human Rights (PHR); The Jerusalem Legal Aid & Human Rights Center (JLAC) West Bank; Women’s Centre for Legal Aid and Counselling (WCLAC)

Other partners


Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, and other likeminded states and institutions.



Coordination with other projects and actors
  • Synergies and coordination with other SDC partners: Diakonia IHL resource centre, the Palestinian Independent Commission of Human rights (ICHR), OHCHR, UNICEF Safeguarding children rights in East Jerusalem (SDC Humanitarian Aid).
  • Continuous coordination and consultation with Swiss actors in the region and in Switzerland.
Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    5’945’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    5’563’750
Project phases Phase 2 01.06.2021 - 31.12.2024   (Current phase)

Phase 1 01.05.2018 - 31.12.2020   (Completed)