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UN Human Rights in Syria


OHCHR Syria operates with a full mandate to protect and promote human rights:

  • monitoring and reporting on the human rights situation in Syria, highlighting emerging human rights concerns and providing early warning analysis.
  • providing legal analysis of the complex situation in Syria and supporting victim/survivor-centric accountability endeavours
  • providing capacity building and technical support to Syrian civil society as well as technical cooperation with Syrian actors
  • supporting the humanitarian leadership in each of the Whole of Syria hubs (Damascus, Amman, Gaziantep) to strengthen the integration and mainstreaming of human rights in the UN’s humanitarian response.

The Office supports UN efforts to broker a peace process as stipulated by Security Council Resolution 2254, particularly through closer engagement with the Office of the Special Envoy to Syria, and is committed to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, with a strong focus on peace/justice/strong institutions and inclusion. All units of OHCHR Syria integrate a gender perspective in shaping the work. The Office participated in OHCHR’s Gender Accreditation Programme in 2022/2023 and was awarded the highest level of accreditation in June 2023.


  • An innovative approach to technical cooperation and civil society support including through the development of online resources such as videos and an eLearning course on a human rights-based approach towards advocacy and programming in the Syrian context.
  • Supporting the establishment of the Independent Institution on Missing Persons in Syria.
  • Delivery of timely and impartial human rights information with gender-sensitive analysis focused on early warning to support policymaking and prevention.
  • Promotion of accountability for serious violations/abuses of international law by all actors, focusing on the full spectrum of victim/survivor asks including the rights to know, reparations, justice, and non-repetition, and highlighting complementary approaches.
  • Provision of a ‘whole office package’ of support to the humanitarian leadership and response in Syria with advisory services, timely reporting, and robust legal analysis to strengthen the humanitarian response.
  • Strengthened work on gender and persons with disabilities. throughout all its programming. OHCHR Syria is one of OHCHR’s six gender-accredited field Offices.

Type of engagement: Country Office

Year established: 2019 (preceded by a smaller monitoring presence from 2013)

Field offices: Beirut, Lebanon (restricted physical access to Syria)

Partners: UN Country Team; Whole of Syria Agencies; International Commission of Inquiry: International, Impartial, and Independent Mechanism: Independent Institution on Missing Persons in Syria; Office of the Special Envoy to Syria; international and Syrian civil society organisations; Member States.

Donors: European Union, Germany, Finland, Iceland, Italy, the Netherlands, Quatar, Switzerland, the United Kingdom.

Budget 2022 - 2024: USD 13,988,002

UN Human Rights Focus Areas

Thematic pillars for 2024 – 2027

  • Prevent violations and strengthen protection of human rights, including in situations of conflict and insecurity.
  • Strengthen the rule of law and accountability for human rights violations.
  • Enhance participation and protect civic space.
  • Enhance equality and counter discrimination.

Spotlight populations for 2024 - 2027

  • Women
  • People with disabilities
  • Youth

Last reviewed: April 2024