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Middle East and North Africa Section


The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Section in the Field Operations and Technical Cooperation Division (FOTCD) is based at OHCHR headquarters in Geneva and covers 19 countries: Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Occupied Palestinian Territory, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

The MENA Section is responsible for the day-to-day work of OHCHR in the MENA region, such as following human rights developments at the national and regional levels, interacting with governments, national human rights institutions (NHRIs), civil society actors and the UN system, and engaging with the international human rights mechanisms.

The MENA Section provides substantive, programmatic, budgetary and human resource support and strategic oversight to the OHCHR field presences in the MENA region.

Furthermore, the MENA Section supports the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, and the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People.

UN Human Rights Focus Areas

Thematic pillars
  • Accountability: Strengthening rule of law and accountability for human rights violations
  • Mechanisms: Increasing implementation of the outcomes of the international human rights mechanisms
  • Participation: Enhancing & protecting civic space and people’s participation
  • Peace and security: Preventing violations and strengthening protection of human rights, including in situations of conflict and insecurity
  • Non-discrimination: Enhance equality and counter discrimination
  • Development: Integrating human rights in sustainable development
  • Prevention
  • People on the move
  • Civic space
  • Global constituency
  • Equality (Frontier issues)
  • Climate Change (Frontier issues)
Spotlight populations
  • Women
  • Persons with disabilities
  • Young people

Last reviewed: May 2021