ICNL’s MENA office Executive Director Dima Jweihan recently appeared on the Eye on Democracy Live Show to speak about new approaches for civil society following the Arab Spring revolutions in the MENA region. The episode focused on the Forum for the Future (FFF) initiative, a joint partnership between the G8 and Broader Middle East and North Africa (BMENA) countries. Currently co-chaired by the United States and Tunisia, the FFF brings together government officials, private sector representatives, and civil society activists to shape dialogue on critical issues relating to political and economic rights in the region. This year, the Forum’s themes include women’s empowerment, economic governance and entrepreneurship, and freedom of association and expression.
The recent Eye on Democracy episode also featured DAS Nazanin Ash and Mr. Faisal Qwei’a of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Tunisia, who discussed the progress of the Forum for the Future of 2012. Representing the civil society sector, Ms. Dima Jweihan, and Yemeni Civil Society Activist, Ezz Al-Din Asbahi considered the challenges facing civil society in the MENA region, particularly the restrictive legal environment in which CSOs operate. The panel concluded by exploring the mechanisms to follow up on the FFF recommendations, such as prioritizing the civil society law reform process and facilitating increased dialogue between the government and CSO sector.
The Eye on Democracy Live Show is hosted by the Al-Hurra channel, which provides coverage on topics relating to democracy and human rights in the Arab world. The Eye on Democracy Live Show regularly invites human rights activists and democracy experts to contribute expertise on these issues.