Syria Centers


Syria Centers


Known Centers based in Syria


If your center is not in this list and you want to be added, please contact HURIGHTS OSAKA and we will assist you.







Al-Marsad - The Arab Center for Human Rights in the Golan Heights



Year Established: 2003


Short Historical Background


Al-Marsad - The Arab Center for Human Rights in the Golan Heights is an independent non-profit legal human rights organization, located in Majdal Shams, in the Occupied Syrian Golan Heights. The center was founded in October 2003 by a group of lawyers and professionals in the fields of health, education, journalism and engineering (mostly town-planners) as well as human rights defenders and other interested community members.




Al-Marsad aims

1) To monitor and document Israeli violations of human rights against the Syrian Arabs in the Golan Heights, both past and present.

2) To monitor and document grave violations of the International Humanitarian Law by Israel.


Programs and Activities


Research and Publication – Al Marsad produces reports and studies regarding the occupation of the Golan Heights on the basis of International Humanitarian and Human Rights Law. Since its inauguration, Al-Marsad has been producing a newsletter regarding issues of the utmost concern in the Occupied Golan Heights, such as the planning policy of Israel in the Occupied Golan Heights; the situation of Separated Families; and the Landmine Problem in the area etc. Al Marsad has also produced a number of reports for various international organizations such as the United Nations (UN) Special Committee, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, and the International Committee for the Red Cross in Geneva.


Rights Promotion of the Arab Population in the Occupied Golan Heights - Al Marsad has produced a brochure regarding the organizations’ main goals and objectives, which was distributed among the community of the Golan Heights. Moreover, it appeals to international institutions and forums in order to promote the rights of the Arab population in the occupied Golan in particular, and human rights in general. This is done through its participation in international conferences and human rights training courses; and submission of regular reports to various international organizations.


Increasing awareness within the community about human rights issues – this is done by means of lectures, workshops and training courses. In fact, Al Marsad organizes human rights training courses in cooperation with the International Service for Human Rights (ISHR) in its office in Majdal Shams. These courses provide information and guidance regarding human rights issues to local community groups such as the Arab Development Organization and Women Organization of the Golan Heights.


Providing legal services for the Syrian Arab inhabitants of the Golan Heights - Al Marsad has also provided advocacy and free legal service to the Arab local community of the Syrian Golan who has been subjected to both violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law by the Israeli occupying power; this is an area which the organization would like to build on more for the future.


Internship Program - Al Marsad over the past number of years has run an internship program from its office in Majdal Shams. This program has provided a great opportunity for recently graduated students to learn both about the situation of the Golan Heights in general and also about the international humanitarian law and human rights law violations occurring in the Golan Heights under the illegal Occupation of Israel.


Organizing Campaigns – Al Marsad organizes campaigns in order to educate the local and international communities about the human rights situation in the Occupied Golan Heights. For example, on April 19, 2008, Al Marsad celebrated the global day of action to ban cluster bombs in Majdal Shams, a town in the Occupied Syrian Golan. Al Marsad opened to the public a petition book for signing. This coincided with the establishment of a commission against landmines and cluster munitions in the Occupied Syrian Golan under the guidance of Al Marsad, whose committee members are made up of different individuals including landmine survivors.




Some publications of Al Marsad:
• From Peaceful Demonstrations to Armed Conflict: Considering International Humanitarian Intervention and Accountability in the Case of Syria (2012)
• Forced Eviction and Internal Displacement in the Occupied
18 Syrian Golan (2011)
• Breaking Down the Fence: Addressing the Illegality of Family Separation in the Occupied Syrian Golan (2010)
• A Consideration of the Legality and Consequences of Israeli Exploitation of the Water Resources of the Occupied Syrian Golan (2010)
• Al Marsad’s Report to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (2007)
• The Occupied Syrian Golan: Background (2005).
• Press releases, copies of reports submitted to international organizations, and other reports detailing Al Marsad’s programs and activities are available online, visit




AL-MARSAD - The Arab Center for Human Rights in the Golan Heights

P.O. Box 9

Majdal Shams 12438

Golan Heights, Via Israel

ph (972-4) 687-0644

fax (972-4) 687-0645

e-mail: marsad[a]





Damascus Center for Human Rights Studies (DCHRS)

Year Established: 2005

Short Historical Background

The Damascus Center for Human Rights studies (DCHRS) is an independent, non-governmental organization, established in 2005 in the Syrian capital of Damascus. Its mission is to foster a spirit of
support and respect for the values and standards of human rights in Syria. As such, DCHRS recognizes and adheres to all pertinent international human rights agreements and declarations adopted by the United Nations (UN).


DCHRS aims to advance the culture of human rights in Syrian society by sponsoring a range of academic and theoretically-oriented programs. These activities include detailed studies and research
projects, as well as the holding of conferences, seminars, and courses that critically engage the field of human rights.

Programs and Activities

DCHRS undertakes studies and research projects that address Syrian legislations, Arab and international legal issues, and international human rights agreements.
Being explicitly opposed to any type of violation of human rights as specified by the Syrian Constitution and/or the relevant international agreements, DCHRS monitors such violations, and attempts to eliminate them through all available legal and peaceful channels.
DCHRS realizes its mission through various means of communication, particularly the visual, audio, and print media. It also holds conferences and workshops relating to issues of human rights,
democracy, and judicial independence. Periodically, DCHRS offers specialized training in such areas.
DCHRS cooperates with human rights organizations as well as intellectual and scientific organizations pursuing similar goals. As part of its effort to address political cases with fairness and neutrality, DCHRS supports and coordinates networking with other nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in and outside Syria. DCHRS also works with regional and international bodies to discuss the
priorities of human rights issues in the Arab world, and formulate collective strategies regarding these issues.


• Years of Fear – The Enforced Disappeared in Syria , Radwan Ziadeh
• Power and Policy in Syria: Intelligence Services, Foreign Relations and Democracy in the Modern Middle East, Radwan Ziadeh (2010) Magazine/Bulletin
• Mizkat Magazine (Arabic)
• Boussla Bulletin


Damascus Center for Human Rights Studies (DCHRS)
The Blake Building
1025 Connecticut Avenue NW, 10th Floor
Washington, DC, 20036, U.S.A.
ph (1 (202) 828-1228
e-mail: info[a]





The Syrian Human Rights Committee (SHRC)



Year Established:1997


Short Historical Background


The Syrian Human Rights Committee (SHRC) is an independent and neutral human rights organization concerned fundamentally with defending general liberties and human rights of the Syrian people. Until SHRC is permitted to open a head office in Damascus and branches in the Syrian provinces, SHRC will be temporarily based in London.




SHRC aims

1. To expose the violations, assaults and aggressions against human rights and fundamental liberties of the Syrian citizens, publish them to the international media, address the issues to the authorities, and follow-up on such reported incidents with all concerned entities

2. To conduct research and publish books and studies related to fundamental liberties and human rights in Syria utilizing scientific research methodologies and investigative verification

3. To issue various reports, initiate humane campaigns and conduct seminars and interviews to highlight and bring to attention the human right issues in Syria

4. To raise awareness and promote the culture of human rights in the Syrian society and encourage members of the society to continuously demand for their human rights and general liberties through peaceful means

5. To adhere to the principle of cooperation with organizations, entities, centers, and non-governmental associations specializing in actively defending and advocating human rights, while preserving the independent nature of the committee’s work agenda.


Programs and Activities


Research and Publication – SHRC gathers information on various issues concerning human rights violations (especially random and arbitrary detentions) in Syria. It publishes regular and annual reports, press releases, and even list of detainees of Syrian Prisons.

Campaign and Appeal - SHRC releases campaigns and appeals for its target issues in violated human rights in Syria.


Special Concerns


SRCH is specifically concerned with protecting the rights of arbitrary detained individuals. Name Lists, Reports, and Appeals concerning detainees are all accessible the SRCH website




• Report on the Human Rights Situation in Syria Over a 20-year Period (2001)

• Justice Journal (quarterly) - fundamentally concerned with defending general liberties and human rights of the Syrian people

• Featured Books (available online):

- Just Five Minutes: Nine Years in the Prisons of Syria, Hiba Dabbagh (2007)

- Tadmur: a Witness and a Witnessed (in Arabic), Mohammed Saleem Hammad (1998)

• Reports, Press Releases, Books and the Justice Journal are all accessible on the SRCH website (




Syrian Human Rights Committee

BCM Box: 2789

London WC1N 3XX

United Kingdom

fax (44-870) 137 7678

email: walid[a], webmaster[a]