BZU Institute of Law Graduates Cohort in “Integrating Gender Criteria”
On 2 May 2012, the Institute of Law (IoL) at Birzeit University organized a
graduation ceremony for participants in the Integrating Gender Criteria in the
Local Government Sector program. The ceremony was observed by Rabiha Thyab,
Minister of Women’s Affairs; Dr. Khalil al Hindi, BZU President; Dr. Ghassan
Faramand, IoL Director; Hanan Imsieh, Director of the Gender Unit at the
Ministry of Local Government; and Khaled Shahwan, Representative of the UNDP
Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People (PAPP). The training
initiative was implemented throughout various Palestinian governorates from
September 2011 through February 2012.
In his opening remarks, Dr. Hindi expressed his pride at IoL activities and
programs, including training, legislative drafting, consultancies, and research
services delivered to BZU departments and to the broader Palestinian community.
He commended: “The IoL is a significant think tank for legal information and
legislation. It organizes seminars and conferences on themes of national and
international law.” Dr. Hindi also announced that BZU is considering further
technical support to the Ministry of Local Government (MoLG), including Local Government
Units (LGUs), and the Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA). Such an effort
pursues mutual national goals of building institutions to support the
independent State of Palestine.
Thyab noted that integrating gender criteria in the local government sector
positively promotes equality between women and men. It further helps in
building a civil, democratic society that is dominated by social justice and true
partnership. Highlighting past and present achievements, Thyab stated that the
MoWA has played an active role in developing national government strategies,
legislation, and gender-responsive budgets. In addition to contributing to the
National Strategy against Gender-based Violence, the MoWA has established
gender units in line ministries.
Imsieh explained that LGUs are required to respond effectively to local
communities’ increasing needs. LGUs should be well informed of the respective
community’s status, groups, resources, and trends, which will only materialize
through an active interaction with all community groups. Imsieh expressed her gratitude
to the IoL for responding to social needs, including its multiple programs
targeting development of the local government sector.
Shahwan thanked the IoL for its significant contribution that has rendered the
Integrating Gender Criteria in the Local Government Sector program successful.
This important endeavor has been designed to integrate gender criteria in the
work of LGUs, empower Palestinian women, and achieve sustainable development
Dr. Faramand noted that in this first phase of Integrating Gender Criteria in
the Local Government Sector program, training and mentoring was successfully
provided to a total of 346 LGU staff members at 163 LGUs across the West Bank
and Gaza Strip. As part of the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) on Promoting
Gender Equality and Empowering Women in the occupied Palestinian territory, six
UN Agencies, namely UNDP/PAPP, UN-Women, ILO, UNESCO, UNFPA and UNRWA, have implemented
this Joint Program funded by the Government of Spain on Gender Equality and
Women's Empowerment, covering the period from 2009 to 2012. In partnership with
agencies of the Palestinian National Authority, the program has been led by the
In conclusion of the ceremony, certificates were conferred on participants.