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The Facility is a result of the new approach announced in the communication on "A New Response to a Changing Neighborhood" of 25 May 2011. The approach advanced by the EU, based on mutual accountability and transparency and a shared commitment to respective universal values, international human rights standards, democracy and the rule of law, and entails a greater involvement of civil society in a policy-structured dialogue. In this regard, the EU supports civil society organizations (CSOs) to boost their capacities and possibilities to contribute to policy-making and hold governments to account.
The Facility is also referenced in the communication on “A Partnership for Democracy and Shared Prosperity with the Southern Mediterranean". This document embodies a response to the recent events in the Neighborhood South while building upon proceeding actions, like the regional programme Civil Society South implemented during 2009-2012. However, to build on what has already been achieved, it is necessary to enhance the credibility of the process, encourage more target-oriented approaches from organizations, by taking into account the development of policies, especially the European Neighborhood Policy.
In this regard, the initiative will align the assistance and the policy dialogue with the institutionalized political dialogue carried out by the EU with partner countries, in the context of the Association Committees and appropriate Sub-Committees of the ENP. It is thus essential to underline the commitment on promoting an enabling environment for CSOs and their participation in national reforms, at the political level.