Hivos International


Hivos Advices The Netherlands Advisory Council On International Affairs on Support to Democratic Reforms in the Middle East

As a reaction to popular uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa, The Dutch Advisory Council On International Affairs (AIV) requested Hivos and other Dutch NGOs on 21st of April to advice it on how the Dutch government could support reforms, democratization processes and rule of law in the region. Today the 28th of June the Dutch parliament debates about the AIV advise entitled Reforms in the Arab Region: Opportunities for Democracy and Rule of Law (Dutch translation) as well as the response of the Netherlands government.

Managing militarization in Syria

The most prominent and most troubling of the trends that have shaped the Syrian uprising over the past year is the militarization of the uprising and its transformation from a largely peaceful protest movement to a low-level insurgency dominated not by citizen activists but by a dangerous and uncoordinated array of armed opposition fighters. Dealing with this trend is the most urgent task facing the United States, the Arab League, the European Union, Turkey and the rest of the "Friends of Syria" group scheduled to meet in Tunis on Friday. If the militarization of the Syrian uprising is not managed, the hope for meaningful change in Syria may be lost.

Read this interesting personal account of Amjad Baiazy, the Syrian human rights and civil society activist, who was imprisoned by the Syrian authorities on May 12, 2011 and released on June 30, 2011. While in prison, Amajd Baiazy engaged in discussions with inmates on the myths and realities surrounding the Syrian revolution. In this personal account and analysis, Amjad Baiazy addresses the topics of sectarianism, start of the revolution in Daraa, role of Islamists and ‘conspiracy theories’.  

The Day After: Hivos Supports Democratic Transition in Syria

The Day After project brought together a group of Syrians representing a large spectrum of the Syrian opposition—including senior representatives of the Syrian National Council (SNC), members of the Local Coordination Committees in Syria (LCC), and unaffiliated opposition figures from inside Syria and the Diaspora representing all major political trends and components of Syrian society—to participate in an independent transition planning process.

‘From Resilience to Revolt. Making Sense of the Arab Spring’

Early 2011 waves of protest started rolling through the Middle East. Though in many states the status quo was only shaken without any actual transformations, the popular uprisings, which have since become known as the “Arab Spring”, did manage to remove a series of leaders from their figurative thrones.

Hivos Provides Analysis to BBC on Support to Media Freedoms and Rights in Syria

Case Study by BBC

BBC recently released an authoritative study on support to media freedom in Syria: "COUNTRY CASE STUDY: SYRIA. Support to media where media freedoms and rights are constrained". BBC explains the aim of this publication: "This case study is part of a series of BBC Media Action research papers, including 5 case studies and a synthesis, discussing reasons why the media in each of the countries featured is constrained and how outside agencies and donors support free and independent media. Commissioned by Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), they are designed to describe the media landscape and media development (countries include Syria, South Sudan, Cambodia, Bangladesh, and Uganda) and set out best practice for donors to sustainably fund and support media internationally".

When we look at the group of protesters that sparked the revolutionary upheaval in the MENA region, we learn that many of them were women. Their participation in the squares, in online fora and behind the war front is impressive. However, their role in the outcome of these political transitions does not reflect their involvement and contribution in any way. How did this happen, and what to do now?

Video of panel discussion on Middle East's Dignity Revolutions

Hivos at the Carnegie Middle East Center, Beirut

Last February, the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut hosted our knowledge officer Kawa Hassan for adiscussion on the Middle East's dignity revolutions. Prior to the Middle East’s recent revolutions, the relationship  between Western donors and regional actors was based on an  overestimation of the state and an underestimation of Arab societies as a  viable partner for reform. In light of the Arab uprisings over the last  two years, Western donors must realize that the transition from  absolute dictatorship to democracy requires a great deal of patience and  efficiency. Only then will they be able to positively impact the Middle  East’s changing political dynamics.

Hivos analyzes the future of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood

Knowledge Officer Kawa Hassan was invited by Clio (the Study Association of International Relations & International Organizations at the University of Groningen) to analyze the current political landscape in Egypt. At Clio’s second Forum Committee Lecture, Hassan refuted fears of a Muslim Brotherhood take-over, but rather pointed at the likeliness for this party to become incorporated in the democratic political system.

Hivos' Kawa Hassan Sheds Light On Egypt's Revolution Three Years On

Upon the invitation of DUNSA-Utrecht, Kawa Hassan, the middle east expert of Hivos will participate in a one-day conference on Democracy, Global Markets and Development on 8 February in Utrecht, the Netherlands. At this conference, our middle east expert will debate with the Egyptian journalist Harif Abdel Kouddous and the Dutch-Egyptian blogger Monique Samuel about the Egyptian revolution. Since the outbreak of the “Arab Spring” in 2011, two Egyptian presidents were ousted by popular uprisings. Currently, the army is back in power.