News / 9 June 2009

Both ENDS helps formulate Dutch policy on Human Rights and the MDG's

On 25 and 26 May 2009 the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs hosted a seminar on the interlinkages between human rights and the Millennium Development Goals. For many years, Both ENDS and allied organisations - such as the Freshwater Action Network, the Centrre on Housing Rights and Evictions and Simavi - have been advocating a human rights approach to development. This approach strengthens the rights of civil society in determining how natural resources are managed.


In 2007 Both ENDS successfully campaigned for the recognition of the right to water by the Dutch government. Since then the 'rights based approach' has become more and more embedded in Dutch development policy. At the May seminar, the Dutch Minister for development cooperation highlighted the fact that using a rights based approach, could speed up progress on the Millennium Development Goals.


Both ENDS congratulates the Ministry on its leadership in this field of work and encourages other European countries to enter the debate on how to integrate human rights into development thinking. In partnership with the Ministry, Both ENDS carried out a feasibility study into a pilot project intended to further the realisation of the right to water and sanitation in Benin. This study was one of the cases being discussed at the seminar. And in June 2009, a similar study will be carried out by Both ENDS in Indonesia. In this way Both ENDS hopes to support partners striving for non-discrimination in the way in which access to water is approached by both governments and donors.


Would you like to read more about Both ENDS work on the right to water, check the Both ENDS Briefing Paper. Or contact Tobias Schmitz.



Photograph by Aaron TD


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