If it is true that the challenges faced by partners in the Southern Mediterranean region are diverse and multi-faceted, they nevertheless share the common aspiration for stability built on democracy, good governance and most importantly, on the respect of human rights and the rule of law. Hence, to be able to address the particular needs of beneficiaries, while holistically sustaining the region in its ongoing reforms, the South Programme III runs regional initiatives alongside bilateral, country-specific support.

A representative of Zarqa Municipality (Jordan) speaking at the Lisbon Forum 2016 “Migration and human rights: how to structure effective collective action?”

The programme is open to the partners from the Southern Mediterranean that are covered by the Revised European Neighbourhood Instrument (ENI) of the European Union and the Council of Europe’s policy towards neighbouring regions, namely Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestine*, Tunisia.

Regional initiatives provide an unparalleled opportunity for partners to come together, at the political and technical level, to discuss common issues, share strategies and explore areas for cooperation. Through regional action, the South Programme III promotes South-South and North-South dialogue. It allows partners to find ways of dealing with common challenges and transnational issues such as trafficking in human beings, violence against women, etc. These initiatives are complemented by bilateral cooperation which addresses partners’ special needs based on their demand and adapted to their local realities.


*This designation shall not be construed as recognition of a State of Palestine and is without prejudice to the individual positions of Council of Europe and European Union member States on this issue.

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