Charles Shamas

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Charles Shamas "is the Senior Partner and founder of the MATTIN Group, a voluntary human rights-based partnership in Palestine that draws on the disciplines of law, economics, commerce and trade policy to address problems of international human rights and international humanitarian law enforcement and issues of third state responsibility. In 1979 he founded a laboratory manufacturing venture in Ramallah. Over the next decade the MATTIN Group employed that venture to test the institutional constraints on skilled labour-based manufacturing in the occupied Palestinian territories, test a repositioning path for pro-social industry promotion, and initiate direct Palestinian exports to the EU and the US. Mr. Shamas led a successful MATTIN Group effort to coax Israel's key trading partners (the EC, the US and EFTA) into reversing their de facto acceptance of Israel's administrative annexation of the occupied Palestinian and Syrian territories, establishing separate regimes for trading with Palestinian exporters, and overcoming Israel's refusal to permit direct Palestinian agricultural exports. He subsequently co-founded the Palestinian Trade Promotion Organisation and served as a member of its Executive Committee and acting Executive Director. Mr Shamas has also advised the PLO/PNA on IHL-related diplomacy, and attended the expert meeting convened by Switzerland in 1999 as a member of the Palestinian delegation. Recently, the work of the MATTIN Group has been heavily focused on strategic law-based lobbying and advocacy efforts. In partnership with several European NGOs the MATTIN Group has launched several interventions aimed at promoting greater consistency between the EU's management of its relations with Israel and the Palestinian Authority on the one hand, and its human rights obligations on the other. Mr Shamas was a co-founder of Al-Haq. He established Al-Haq's "international enforcement" project and served on Al-Haq's Executive Committee until 1991. He is currently a member of the MENA advisory board of Human Rights Watch. He is the author and co-author of several articles and analytical reports on IHL, EU external relations and trade-related subjects." [1]

Resources and articles


  1. Al-Haq Media Packet, "From Theory to Practice: Upholding International Humanitarian Law in the Occupied Palestinian Territories", 21- 24 November 2005, Grand Park Hotel, Ramallah.