Danish efforts in Palestine bearing fruit

Denmark’s aid has led to improved human rights and civil society

Denmark’s efforts to help build up the institutions and organisations, which are critical to help create a sustainable Palestine as part of a solution in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, look to be bearing fruit.

An evaluation of the Danish aid and development efforts in Palestine by the Dutch consultancy firm Ecorys showed that Denmark’s engagement in the embattled region has seen positive results.

“Denmark has, for instance, contributed to the establishment of an independent human rights commission in Palestine and a strengthened civil society,” said the Foreign Ministry.

“Thousands of people have had human rights complaints processed. In the local government arena, where Denmark is a leading donor, the Danish aid has led to a stronger local government, improved distribution of essential services and the establishment of infrastructure, including roads and sewers.”

READ MORE: Danish aid to help battered women in Palestine

More to be done
But not all in the evaluation was positive. The report criticised Denmark and the international community for not doing enough to ensure that aid contributes to the overall goal of supporting a two-state solution to the conflict.

One critique is that Denmark and other donors should step up the political dialogue with Israel concerning aspects of Israeli policy and actions that hinder the development of Palestine, such as settlement policy and human rights transgressions.

Denmark has given aid to Palestine since the Oslo agreements in the 1990s.