The Department of State is inviting applicants to submit proposals for programs that include components to develop local investigative and judicial skills; to collect and preserve evidence and maintain the chain of custody of evidence; and to conduct other activities that directly support investigations and prosecutions of those responsible for atrocities in available jurisdictions, such as building cases, filing criminal complaints, and sharing information with national authorities.
Applicants must incorporate plans on how their proposals will support and be de-conflicted with ongoing transitional justice work being undertaken by other U.S. government entities and international donors, as well the United Nations, other international organizations, and nongovernmental organizations. Each applicant must present a plan on how it will be flexible and responsive to time-sensitive requirements; monitor and evaluate activities; and coordinate activities with the Department of State and other relevant U.S. government entities and international donors. Applicants should consider the context of Iraq and Syria’s dynamic and challenging operating environments in their proposals, especially in terms of program implementation and monitoring.
Applicants must demonstrate a clear understanding of international criminal law, operational investigative and prosecutorial work, and jurisdictions available to seek criminal accountability for atrocities in Iraq and Syria. Awards will be issued with the expectation of substantial involvement from the Department of State in the grantee’s implementation of this program.
A successful project will result in the advancement of investigations and prosecutions of perpetrators of atrocities in Iraq or Syria. Programming may include, but is not limited to, one or more of the following areas:
- Collect, preserve, and/or analyze evidence of atrocities in Iraq or Syria, maintaining legal chain of custody of evidence and sharing with appropriate national authorities and multilateral accountability mechanisms. Programs should consider inclusion of civil society, including medical and legal professionals, where appropriate.
- Build case files to share with national authorities and multilateral accountability mechanisms in support of investigations and prosecutions of crimes and alleged perpetrators of atrocities, including present location.
- Filing criminal complaints in courts that may have jurisdiction over atrocities.
- Support the mandate of the International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism to assist in the Investigation and Prosecution of Persons Responsible for the Most Serious Crimes under International Law Committed in the Syrian Arab Republic since March 2011 (IIIM) and/or the UN Investigative Team for Accountability of Da’esh (UNITAD), while not duplicating the work of either of those teams.
- Develop new technologies to improve searching, processing, and analyzing massive holdings of documents, many or most of which may be in Arabic, Kurdish, and other languages.
- Provide targeted training to law enforcement and/or prosecutorial officials on forensics, crime scene analysis, trial preparation, interviewing of witnesses including of crimes related to sexual violence.
Projects must include:
- A primary focus on advancing justice and accountability through support to criminal investigations and prosecutions for atrocities committed in Iraq or Syria;
- A commitment to share information generated over the course of the project with the State Department, while appropriately respecting confidentiality.
- A willingness to respond to requests for information from the IIIM and/or UNITAD, other international accountability mechanisms, and/or national authorities engaged in such efforts;
- Where programs propose gathering information from victims and witnesses, they must include clear processes for informed consent, confidentiality, service referral, and preventing re-traumatization; and
- A rigorous results monitoring plan with demonstrated feedback loops to show tangible outcomes of the project.
- Estimated Total Program Funding: $4,500,000
- Estimated Award Ceiling: $2,225,000
- Estimated Award Floor: $500,000
- Estimated Length of Project Period: Up to 24 Months
- Eligibility Criteria
Eligible applicants include:
- U.S. or foreign o non-profit organizations;
- For-profit organizations; o Private institutions of higher education;
- Public or state institutions of higher education;
- Public international organizations;
- Applicants should have functional experience in the areas of investigating and prosecuting conflict related atrocities in Iraq and/ or Syria.
- The Department of State welcomes applications irrespective of an applicants’ race, ethnicity, color, creed, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, or disability. They encourage applications from organizations working with underserved communities, including women, people with disabilities, and youth.