Turkish Cypriot civil society granted €2.5 mln

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The European Commission issued 12 grants worth €2.5 mln to support Turkish Cypriot civil society organisations in promoting EU values and creating a fertile environment for dialogue and cooperation with Greek Cypriots.

It signed 11 new contracts with different Turkish Cypriot civil society organisations for a total of €1.8 mln, a direct grant of €700,000 for the Human Rights Platform association.

The projects to be funded will be implemented over the next two to three years in access to human rights for vulnerable or minority groups, youth and women empowerment, worker rights, advocacy on sustainable development goals, waste management and environmental literacy.

The grants are part of “Cypriot Civil Society in Action” that encourages organisations to pursue meaningful socio-economic change by participating in decision-making and policy implementation, influencing change at the local and EU level while fostering dialogue between the Cypriot communities.

The Human Rights Platform association brings together several rights-based Turkish Cypriot civil society organisations advocating a more just, equitable, democratic and inclusive society.

The project, which will be implemented in the next two years, will primarily focus on anti-trafficking, refugee rights, LGBTI+ rights, democratic participation in the decision-making process – including freedom of association and freedom of expression, detention conditions and freedom from torture.

The platform will develop synergies and cooperation with Greek Cypriot and EU civil society organisations or networks.

The Commission said that since 2007 it had launched seven “Cypriot civil society in action” calls for proposals, for a total amount of €14 mln, and one thematic call for proposals under the theme “Together against Trafficking in Human Beings for €1 mln.

“By supporting civil society in the Turkish Cypriot community, the Aid Programme assists in the development of a fairer society based on respect for human dignity, human rights, freedom, democracy, equality and the rule of law,” it said.