National Human Rights Officer

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18 Min Read
  • Contract
  • Tripoli

UNDP - United Nations Development Programme


Diversity, Equity and Inclusion are core principles at UNDP:  we value diversity as an expression of the multiplicity of nations and cultures where we operate, we foster inclusion as a way of ensuring all personnel are empowered to contribute to our mission, and we ensure equity and fairness in all our actions. Taking a ‘leave no one behind’ approach to our diversity efforts means increasing representation of underserved populations. People who identify as belonging to marginalized or excluded populations are strongly encouraged to apply. Learn more about working at UNDP including our values and inspiring stories.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


The excavation, identification and reburial of individuals killed and “disappeared” during the recent conflict and under the previous regime is one of the most urgent challenges facing the Libyan state. Addressing the file of missing persons, recovering the truth about the fate of the disappeared through a fair, transparent and scientific truth-seeking process, will deeply contribute to national reconciliation and form a cornerstone of any transitional justice process in Libya. Grievances related to missing persons are also at the heart of local dialogues and reconciliation efforts in various areas.


In that context, UNDP and UNSMIL HRS designed a project to address the issue of missing persons in Libya by achieving the two main expected impacts : 1) Victims of enforced disappearances and their families are better equipped to engage in national and international transitional justice initiatives, and to seek justice and security services, and 2) Security and justice sector actors are better equipped to make security and justice institutions more responsive, accountable, and better able to prevent gross human rights violations, in particular enforced disappearances.


To achieve these goals, UNSMIL HRS and the UNDP Strengthening the Rule of Law and Justice in Libya Project (Project Team) will build and expand upon their experience in human rights violations monitoring, providing technical assistance to justice and security institutions, and connecting CSOs and victims’ associations from all three regions of Libya, to address the deep, societal effects of prolonged enforced disappearances on families and communities, and design community-led initiatives laying the groundwork for memorialization, truth-telling, and healing for families of victim including through developing one-stop centres for victims and families of missing persons searching for their loved ones, while also empowering these stakeholders to actively and safely advocate for truth and accountability at the national and international levels.


In this context, UNDP is seeking to recruit a National Human Rights Officer, working directly within UNSMIL Human Rights Service and under the Chief of HRS, to co-lead project implementation together with UNDP, Libyan national partners, as well as with relevant civil society organizations, and in close coordination with other relevant UN organizations implementing complementary interventions. 


The position will be based in Tripoli, Libya.

Duties and Responsibilities


Under the guidance and direct supervision of the Head of the Human Rights, Rule of Law and Transitional Justice (HRS) Service of UNSMIL, and in close cooperation with the UNDP Rule of Law Project Manager, the National Human Rights Officer is responsible for assisting the Project Team in providing technical and operational support to the design, implementation and monitoring and reporting of all project activities. The position holder is also expected to support the conduct of the requisite analytical, political, and legal situational assessment to inform program design and understand trends and patterns that impact on the project, in particular in the area of rule of law. 


The National Officer is expected to work independently, with minimal supervision but in close collaboration with the Project Team in Libya, and to actively engage with government and civil society partners and other actors. The successful candidate will have the following specific responsibilities:


  • Ensuring/Supporting UNSMIL HRS and the project Team in the implementation of the Project “Addressing the File of Missing Persons in Libya” based on national legal framework and best practices on transitional justice, truth-seeking, accountability, and missing persons in particular.

    • Conduct thorough analysis and research of the political, legal, and governance situation in Libya on a continuous basis with a particular focus of areas that have impacts on the project implementation,
    • Keep abreast of policy and legal changes that can affect project implementation,
    • Review concept notes, reports, and ToRs for all project activities based on prior needs assessment and context analysis as well as international standards and UN Guidance on transitional justice,
    • Conduct regular field monitoring visits, reporting back on findings and recommendations, follow-up to ensure timely implementation of the recommendations to build the capacity of the implementing partners and respect of Do-No-Harm policies,
    • Ensure adherence of project activities to UN human rights Do-No-Harm policy, inclusion, transparency and due diligence policies, and providing risk mitigation measure where necessary,
    • Ensure that approaches to gender equality are integrated into all aspects of Project implementation.
    • Develop concept notes, reports, and ToRs for all project activities based on prior needs assessment and context analysis as well as international standards and UN Guidance on transitional justice.
  • Building and maintaining trusted relations with key local partners, including civil society organizations, judicial actors, and families of missing persons, in all regions and target areas of the Project, including to oversee grants’ implementation.

    • Support consultations with national stakeholders for the implementation of all project activities, including with the project’s technical committee, civil society organizations and families of missing persons,
    • Assess capacity-building needs among local partners, including civil society organizations and victims’ groups, and help develop well-structured and sustainable plans for addressing them, 
    • Build strong and trusted relationship with local counterparts, as well as with target communities (families of missing persons and civil society in particular),
    • Identify appropriate civil society partners and monitor implementation of grants and other contractual engagement, in coordination with Project Team,
    • Perform other activities as assigned by the Transitional Justice Expert, Project Team Leader and/or the project manager.
  • Facilitation of knowledge building, effective communication, awareness raising of the project activities and building partnerships.

    • Compile project progress reports, distilling lessons learnt, and contribute to reporting requirements,
    • Provide sound contribution to knowledge building, networks and communities of practice, 
    • Ensure systematic recording of best practices and lessons learnt from project implementation in the area of missing persons and transitional justice,
    • Provide technical support to the Head of UNSMIL HRS and UNDP Rule of Law project manager and implementing team to analyze results and lessons learnt and best practices in project implementation and participate actively in relevant communities of practice,
    • Contribute to project communications and visibility efforts including the development of a range of core communication content including reports, briefings, infographics, case studies and presentations.


Institutional Arrangement


The National Human Rights Officer will work under the direct supervision of the Head of UNSMIL HRS, and the Transitional Justice Expert, with technical support from the UNDP Rule of Law Project Manager. On the contractual and administrative level, he/she will be managed by UNDP and is bound by all UNDP Human Resources policies. He/She must adhere to all ongoing UNDP corporate rules and regulations, including SOPs and internal procedure policies applicable to UNDP Libya personnel working within the country office.


Core Competencies 

  • Achieve Results: LEVEL 2: Scale up solutions and simplifies processes, balances speed and accuracy in doing work.
  • Think Innovatively: LEVEL 2: Offer new ideas/open to new approaches, demonstrate systemic/integrated thinking.
  • Learn Continuously:  LEVEL 2: Go outside comfort zone, learn from others and support their learning.
  • Adapt with Agility: LEVEL 2: Adapt processes/approaches to new situations, involve others in change process.
  • Act with Determination: LEVEL 2: Able to persevere and deal with multiple sources of pressure simultaneously.
  • Engage and Partner: LEVEL 2: Is facilitator/integrator, bring people together, build / maintain coalitions / partnerships. 
  • Enable Diversity and Inclusion: LEVEL 2: Facilitate conversations to bridge differences, considers in decision making 


Technical and Cross-Functional Competencies:

Business Direction & Strategy

  • System Thinking: Ability to use objective problem analysis and judgement to understand how interrelated elements coexist within an overall process or system, and to consider how altering one element can impact on other parts of the system

Business Development

  • Knowledge Generation: Ability to research and turn information into useful knowledge, relevant for context, or responsive to a stated need

Business Management          

  • Project Management: Ability to plan, organize, prioritize and control resources, procedures and protocols to achieve specific goals
  • Partnerships Management Ability to build and maintain partnerships with wide networks of stakeholders, governments, civil society and private sector partners, experts and others in line with UNDP strategy, policies and priorities

2030 Agenda: Peace  

  • Justice, Rule of Law, Security and Human Rights: Human Rights Institutions/compliance, Justice institutors/access, effectiveness, Transitional justice
  • Conflict Prevention, Peacebuilding, and Social Cohesion: Community engagement for prevention, response, and social cohesion, Conflict analysis and conflict sensitivity, Peacebuilding and reconciliation, Humanitarian-Development Peace (HDP) Nexus
  • Governance and Responsive Institutions: Local Governance systems, Restoration of key government functions, Area Based Development, Sub-national and local government capacities for planning, coordination and crisis management.

Required Skills and Experience

  • Advanced university degree (master’s degree or equivalent) in Law, Human Rights, Public Policy, Political Science, or related disciplines, or 
  • A first-level university degree (bachelor’s degree) in the above mentioned field in combination with an additional two years of qualifying experience will be given due consideration in lieu of the advanced university degree
  • Minimum 2 years (with master’s degree) or 4 years (with bachelor’s degree) of relevant experience at the national or international level the promotion of human rights and transitional justice in Libya, 
  • Professional experience with victims and survivors of gross human rights violations in Libya,
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the Libyan legal framework and actors,
  • Network and relations with key stakeholders for the Project implementation, including civil society organizations,
  • Professional experience in project implementation with international organizations,
  • Ability to travel across the country,
  • Working level experience with justice and security institutions,
  • Advanced knowledge of Microsoft Office package such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint; Outlook, Zoom and Skype is required;
  • Experience working in a culturally diverse environment;
  • Good communication skills/experience

Required Skills:

  • Experience in Project Management: results-based planning of human and financial resource utilization. 
  • Technical expertise: Demonstrates technical competence in the required field of expertise; Demonstrates an ability to understand his/her environment, both organizationally and strategically; Conveys knowledge through any appropriate medium (memo, oral presentation, etc.), proposes programmatic options and offers pragmatic solutions to challenges encountered. He/she must be able to develop a strategic and macro vision; 
  • Experience to develop action plans, formulate strategic objectives and translate them into operational objectives;
  • DemonstratedAbility to work in close collaboration with line managers, colleagues in the project and in the UNDP and UNSMIL Country Office, national partners and others involved in the project, and to maintain good working relations while respecting diversity; 
  • Demonstrable experience in project delivery in cooperation with governments in the filed of Governance and Rule of Law is required.
  • Experience in day-to-day project impelementation activities (including but not limited to technical support, budget and financial management, procurement, administration, policy and procedures to meet operational needs). 
  • Experience in data collection and M&E.
  • Proven experience in the usage of computers and office software packages (MS Word, Excel, etc.) is required.

Desired Skills:

  • Specific programmatic experience in one or more of the Rule of Law, Human Rights and missing persons related projects ; and direct experience in project delivery, knowledge management and partnerships in a United Nations common system field operation (inclusive of peacekeeping, political missions and UN agencies, funds, and programmes) – or similar international organization or non-governmental organization in a field based environment is desirable;
  • Field experience in the country and region is desirable.
  • Experience in drafting concept notes and proposals in the field of Rule of law, Transitional justice, missing persons assistance.  
  • Experience/Knowledge of UNDP internal policy and ERP system is desirable.
  • Knowledge of UNDP procedures is an asset.
  • Initiative: Ability to take relevant initiatives at key moments in the project;
  • Ability/experience to work under pressure in a complex and changing environment. Ability to work impartially, with tact and discretion; 
  • High availability, with frequent travel within the country.
  • Hands-on knowledge and experience in project management in Libya is an asset.

Required Language(s):

  • Excellent knowledge of English and Arabic (written and spoken).


Under US immigration law, acceptance of a staff position with UNDP, an international organization, may have significant implications for US Permanent Residents. UNDP advises applicants for all professional level posts that they must relinquish their US Permanent Resident status and accept a G-4 visa, or have submitted a valid application for US citizenship prior to commencement of employment. 

UNDP is not in a position to provide advice or assistance on applying for US citizenship and therefore applicants are advised to seek the advice of competent immigration lawyers regarding any applications.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.  We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.


UNDP has a zero-tolerance policy towards sexual exploitation and misconduct, sexual harassment, and abuse of authority. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles.  

UNDP is an equal opportunity and inclusive employer that does not discriminate based on race, sex, gender identity, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, disability, pregnancy, age, language, social origin or other status. 

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