NGO leaders from left to right: Bill Dougherty, Gus Miclat, Olga Amparo Sánchez, Rana Nashashibi and Mauricio Garcia. 

Friday, March 20, 2009
Zenger Room at the National Press Club

Charities perform work that counters global terrorism by advancing development, human rights, and conflict prevention. Rather than being embraced as a valuable asset in reducing the threat of terror, civil society groups have found themselves the target of counterterrorism policies and enforcement measures that are restrictive and intimidating. Barriers to prevent the financing of terrorism have created a chilling effect both donors and charities. Organizations are fearful of operating humanitarian relief projects in political hot spots. Opportunities to increase our security by reducing the root causes of terror are lost.

This unique panel presentation featured NGO leaders from the U.S. and around the world sharing their experiences with security measures, placing their specific experience in a larger framework of the impact on the work of NGOs.

A summary of the event  
—Click here for a complete transcript (including questions and answers) of the entire event—
—Click on the speaker’s name to listen to their presentations—

Welcoming Remarks: Douglas Rutzen, President of the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law

Overview of the report, Friend not Foe: Civil Society and the Struggle against Violent ExtremismAlistair MillarVice-President, Fourth Freedom Forum


Additional information about the panel’s speakers:

Douglas Rutzen is President and CEO of the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law (ICNL), which has worked in over 100 countries on the legal framework for civil society and public participation.  Doug is also an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center, serves on the Advisory Group of Civil Society Watch, and has worked on counter-terrorism issues for over 20 years.

Alistair Millar is the Director of the Center on Global Counterterrorism Cooperation. He has written numerous chapters, articles, and reports on international counterterrorism efforts, sanctions regimes, and nonproliferation. He is author, with Eric Rosand, of Allied against Terrorism: What’s Needed to Strengthen Worldwide Commitment, published by the Century Foundation in 2006. He has an MA from Leeds University and is a PhD candidate at the University of Bradford in the United Kingdom.

Olga Amparo Sánchez is Director of Casa de La Mujer in Bogotá, Colombia. Casa de la Mujer is part of the movement of the Ruta Pacifica of Women, CLADEM and the Conflict Forum on Women and Armed. Olga is presently heading the Technical Secretariat of the Feminist Latin American and Caribbean Network for “A life without violence for women”.

Rana Nashashibi is director of the Palestinian Counseling Center and Lecture in psychology at Bir Zeit University in the West Bank. Was a lecturer in Developmental Psychology and Counseling at Al-Quds University from 1992-1998; was awarded the Hubert Humphrey Fellowship and spent a year at the University of Washington in 1994-95; began lecturing in Counseling Theory and Practice at Birzeit University in 1996; served as a Consultant of the PA Ministries of Social Affairs and Education from 1997; since 2002, PhD candidate at the European Graduate School, Switzerland; has been involved in activities at the Tamer Institute for Community Development and the Palestinian Center for the Rehabilitation of Torture Victims.

Rob Buchanan is Managing Director of International Programs at the Council on Foundations in Arlington, VA. Rob’s previous experience includes ten years with Oxfam America, serving for five years as Program Director for the Horn of Africa and subsequently as the organization’s Washington Representative. Rob also worked on global environmental and international development issues for EarthAction. In addition, he served on the staffs of the United States Senate and House of Representatives in foreign policy positions. Rob is a graduate of The Johns Hopkins University and earned a Masters Degree in International Relations from The Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. He is co-author of Making a Difference in AfricaAdvice from Experienced Grantmakers published by the Council on Foundations in 2004.

Evan Elliott works as a Public Policy Coordinator at InterAction, supporting the legislative work of the Public Policy Unit and its outreach to the administration on issues related to humanitarian space and foreign assistance reform. He holds a master’s degree in International Affairs with a concentration in International Development from the University of Denver, and a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Colorado State University-Pueblo.