Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor
June 1, 2004
FY 2001-2002 Human Rights and Democracy Fund Projects
DRL's Human Rights and Democracy Fund (HRDF), which is DRL's allocation of the Economic Support Fund (ESF), is used to fulfill the Bureau's mandate to monitor and promote human rights and democracy worldwide. HRDF supports innovative programming designed to uphold democratic principles, support democratic institutions, promote human rights, and build civil society in countries and regions of the world that are geo-strategically critical to the U.S. The following are programs that have been or are currently being supported through the fund.
FY 2001-2002 ESF Funds ($13,421,000)
NED Russia/Central Asia Human Rights Defenders ($400,000) – Support local, embattled pro-democracy and human rights non-governmental organizations to strengthen their capacity to work towards free societies with accountable governments in the region.
Uzbekistan NGO Capacity Building ($795,000) – Support the continuation and expansion of a program to strengthen the capacity of local human rights defenders to monitor and report on human rights abuses by establishing two Human Rights Resource Centers to provide more training and resources for such groups to meet, receive and disseminate information in key urban centers and neglected rural areas.
Uzbekistan Rule of Law ($500,000) – Promote rule of law and improved respect for human rights by supporting a program to establish a human rights clinical education program at the Tashkent State Law Institute. Law students will be trained in a special human rights curriculum and will provide free consultation at a Human Rights Clinic.
Kyrgyz Republic Printing Press ($800,000) – Purchase a printing press in a third country and operate for up to three years in order to support independent journalists and encourage the growth and expansion of independent newspapers.
Kyrgyz Republic NGO Capacity Building ($550,000) –This program would support the establishment of twenty-four Information Centers for Democracy (ICDs) to be located throughout the Kyrgyz Republic in order to provide citizens with access to independent media and information as well as the infrastructure to host “town-hall” meetings to discuss current political issues.
Assistance to Human Rights and Democracy Activists in NIS ($250,000) – Support a program to provide rapid assistance to individual human rights and democracy activists, independent journalists, and NGOs affected by government persecution related to their work through one-time emergency grants. The grants would provide them with humanitarian relief, legal aid and other emergency assistance.
Lebanon ($85,000) – Support inter-religious cooperation in Lebanon to advance community cohesion and religious and ethnic tolerance.
Moroccan Justice Sector Reform ($63,000) – Provide international expertise to local human rights groups and bar associations to present recommendations to Parliament for revising the penal procedures code to be consistent with international standards and law.
Peru Elections ($1,000,000) – Support presidential elections by providing technical assistance to the Peruvian electoral authorities and public awareness/education programs for the voters.
Paraguay Archival Project ($110,000) – Strengthen the operations of the Paraguayan Center for Documentation and Archive for the Defense of Human Rights by completing the archives.
Mexico Migrant Workers ($65,000) – Educate migrant Mexican farm workers about US labor laws in an effort to prevent possible abuses.
Nicaragua Elections Monitoring ($400,000) – Fund local election observers for legislative and presidential elections.
Colombia Judicial Sector Relocation Program ($700,000) – Establish and support a temporary relocation program for threatened Colombian judicial sector personnel. The participants would receive specialized training that would enable them to more effectively carry out their work when they return to Colombia after one year.
Strengthening Venezuelan Democratic Institutions ($1,000,000) – Protect and support the democratic processes and institutions in Venezuela such as freedom of expression and journalism, rule of law, civic education, political party building, labor organization, economic reform, business associations, and NGO development.
Kenya Election Support ($300,000) – Support local NGOs to monitor television and radio broadcasts during the election process and to promote issue-based political debates between candidates. Information related to any biased reporting in the media will be provided to Kenya’s electoral commission for corrective action.
Angola Access to Independent Radio ($300,000) – Expand access to independent radio to 85% of Angola’s population by providing funding for the installation of repeaters.
Turkey Judicial Reform ($400,000) – Support judicial sector exchange programs to address Turkey’s most serious human rights problems.
Supporting trade union activists in Belarus ($500,000) – Support the efforts of labor union activists.
Russia Human Rights and NGO Media Strategy ($203,000) – Support efforts by Russian human rights and political party activists to build demand for human rights and democracy at the local level by providing them with information and skills to better communicate with the population.
Independent Serb Media in Kosovo ($100,000) – Support an on-going project (DRL has supported this project for the past two years) to provide an independent Serb-language newspaper for Serbs in Kosovo.
Indonesia Pesantren Training ($323,000) – This project promotes democratic reform and curbs Muslim fundamentalism in Indonesia by providing leaders of Pesantren (Islamic boarding schools) training in democracy, civic education, participatory education, human rights and school administration.
Philippines Vetting Project ($162,000) – This pilot program provides the Philippine Commission on Human Rights with new technology and training to create a computer system to better monitor human rights abuses.
NED Monitoring and Reporting on the Human Rights Conditions in North Korea ($250,000) – NED will support the efforts of South Korean NGOs’ to monitor and report on the human rights condition in North Korea in order to help fill an important information gap and raise international awareness of the human rights situation there.
Democracy Forum for East Asia ($200,000) – This project will build on earlier conferences, workshops, and training programs to help develop and strengthen democracy in the region by including China and Vietnam in the Forum. The first session of the Forum will address the question of the media’s role in reducing corruption – a topic of particular concern in China and one that has important implications for the development of a more independent press there. The second Forum session will be held in conjunction with the Community of Democracies meeting in November in order to integrate Forum participants into a larger community of democrats.
Reducing Judicial Delays in Sri Lanka ($250,000) – Support the establishment of 14 legal aid centers and five regional centers staffed with attorneys to help facilitate the process by which those individuals confined under the Prevention of Terrorism Act receive a review of their case. This program will further our new human rights dialogue begun with SA support.
Community of Democracies ($15,000) – Support the OAS-hosted follow-up conference for the Community of Democracies initiative.
NED Democracy Fellows Program ($1,000,000) – Establish a democracy fellows program which will host scholars of democracy and democracy practitioners, activists, and civic leaders. This was a congressional earmark.
Web site Against Racism ($25,000) – Develop a Web site to strengthen the capacity of the international community to combat racism. The Web site will be demonstrated at the WCAR; if approved by the WCAR attendees, Web site will be maintained by UNHCHR.
Democratic Muslim Leaders Forum ($325,000) – Facilitate a gathering of Muslim political leaders from throughout the world who have demonstrated a commitment to democracy, in an effort to recognize and support leaders who have sought to build a synthesis between Islam and democracy; and help such leaders form a network that would serve as a resource for other Muslim states, most urgently Afghanistan, that are striving to construct and reform their political processes within a democratic framework.
New Tactics to Address Torture ($500,000) – Support an initiative to address torture on a worldwide basis through a series of five regional workshop-based regional conferences at which participants will discuss varies ways to address torture. Regional participants will then attend a worldwide conference in 2003. A workbook is being developed for use at the regional workshops which lays out 120 tactics that can be used to address torture. DRL’s funding will support the creation and distribution of this workbook.
Community of Democracies Ministerial ($279,000) – Provide funding for the second Community of Democracies meeting scheduled for November 2002 in Seoul, Korea.
Community of Democracies NGO Forum ($221,000) – Provide funding to support a forum for NGOs to participate in which will run parallel to the Community of Democracies Ministerial in Seoul, Korea.