Support to internally displaced in Turkey

01 Jul 2006

Within the framework of the Internally Displaced Persons' (IDP) Protection programme, training workshops for Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and Damage Assessment Commissions were held in Ankara and Mersin during June.

New Horizons - The first workshop was organized in Ankara on 8-9 June for 34 members from 24 NGOs. The participating NGOs are working in the fields of human rights, legal issues and service-delivery for IDPs. United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) attended the workshop as observer. Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation's working group on IDPs was also represented at the workshop and shared insights on the recent developments in national IDP response. Conducted by the facilitation of two trainers from the Norwegian Refugee Council/Internally Displaced Monitoring Center (NRC/IDMC), namely Christophe Beau and Kim Mancini, the training covered the following topics:

• Who is an Internally Displaced Person?
• Testimonies: Who is an IDP?
• The Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement: General Presentation
• The Guiding Principles: Legal Origins and International Obligations
• Protection from displacement
• Protection during displacement

The next step in this programme will be a ‘training of trainers workshop', following the preparation of a one-day training module on IDP protection.

The training seminars held in Mersin during 15-16 June and 19-20 June were organized for Damage Assessment Commissions. 125 commission members from 19 provinces in South, Southeast and Northeast Turkey attended these seminars. Mersin Governor Hüseyin Aksoy made the opening speech, and representing the Ministry of the Interior, Deputy-General Director Vasip Şahin, Branch Director from the Provincial Administration General Directorate Ali Fidan, and Abdurrahman Savaş from the Strategy Development Board also participated as speakers.

Rhodri Williams from the Brookings Institute and Peter van Auweraert from International Organisation for Migration were the international resource persons who provided an analysis of different global experiences regarding compensation. Kerem Altıparmak from Ankara University's Political Science Faculty also participated at the seminars to draw conclusions. UNDP Turkey and UNHCR attended the seminar as observers.

Global experience on internal displacement highlights that ensuring a voice for civil society and active engagement by NGOs in IDP return and integration processes is vital for rights-based durable solutions to the problems of IDPs. The UNDP's work on supporting the development of a national IDP response program is therefore equally focused on capacity building for the civil society and on supporting platforms for the voice of civil society to impact government policies.

Presentations at the Training Programme for the Members of Damage Assessment Commissions – June 2006

· Ali Fidan - Reparation of Damages Arising From Terror and Fight Against Terror

· Peter Van der Auweraert - Operational Challenges in Large-Scale Reparation Programmes

· Rhodri C. Williams - IDP Joint Training Program for Commission Members

· Vasip Sahin – Training Seminar “Implementation of Law No.5233”