New ENP should be more about human rights and less about security!

Last week, the joint communication on the review of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) was launched, setting out a new basis for the relations between the EU and its Neighbours.

While the communication addresses the common challenges of socio-economic development, youth employability, good governance, democracy and the rule of law, SOLIDAR is concerned about the strong focus given to “hard” security (which features in both the energy and migration sectors), and little focus given to the progressive realisation of ESCRs, and all human rights in general. Also, while the communication ensures that the EU will engage with all partners in an inclusive dialogue on human rights and democracy issues, it still doesn’t clarify how human rights conditionality will be implemented in the context of a re-negotiation of the Association Agreements with partner countries.

Next week SOLIDAR will participate in the EU NGO Forum on Human Rights that is jointly organised by the European External Action Service (EEAS) and the Human Rights and Democracy Network (HRDN), which among many things, will be an opportunity to discuss the challenges and opportunities to defend and promote CSOs space in promoting and upholding ESCRs, and human rights in general within existing EU policy framework, and in looking closely at the implementation of the EU Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy.

SOLIDAR, through the work of its members and partners across the MENA region, is working to promote social justice by strengthening the role of independent civil society and trade unions in promoting the progressive realisation of ESCRs. Please see SOLIDAR’s work in the region here.