Global Campus Assessment Mission to Dili, Timor-Leste
A team of the Global Campus of Human Rights headed by the Secretary General Manfred Nowak, undertook a participatory assessment mission to Dili, Timor-Leste, at the end of January 2019, as a first step in the implementation of the project “Development of human rights education and research activities at the Universidade Nacional Timor Lorosa’e (UNTL)”.
The project is funded by the European Union and aims at contributing to the promotion of human rights, democracy and development in Timor-Leste by establishing a Human Rights Centre within the Faculty of Social Sciences of UNTL in Dili. The Center will engage in training, international networking and research activities, and is envisaged to prospectively become an active partner within the Global Campus Asia-Pacific network led by the Mahidol University, Thailand.
The Global Campus team met with the Timorese government and Parliament, with the Delegation of the European Union to Timor-Leste, with main stakeholders from civil society organizations, NGOs, academia, as well as the international community to assess and plan the next steps in the implementation of the project. The meetings also served to identify topics in the field of human rights which are of special interest in the country, build a solid network and secure support for the action.
The remarkable level of support and enthusiasm gathered around the project by local and international stakeholders during the mission is extremely encouraging for the successful development of the action. A clear and positive sign of the fruitful cooperation established is the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Global Campus and the UNTL in the presence of major stakeholders – including Nobel Peace Prizelaureate José Ramos-Horta – signalling the commitment of all parties to the success of the project.
At the core of the project lies the building of capacities in the field of human rights at UNTL, which will be achieved through a set of human rights training and fellowship programmes starting from May 2019, including a comprehensive scholarship scheme that will allow six Timorese to participate the Global Campus Regional Master’s Programme in Human Rights and Democratisation in Asia Pacific (GC Asia-Pacific/APMA). At the same time, premises and a library for the Human Rights Centre at UNTL will be developed.
The project was conceived at the initiative of the Delegation of the European Union to Timor-Leste and is funded by the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) Country Based Support Schemes (CBSS). It will be completed by November 2020.