Methodology

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Objective: Advocacy and informing – The outcomes of the research will be useful for awareness-raising on the issues facing organisations working on the Syrian crisis and other conflict areas, and give concrete policy recommendations to better tackle the problem and share best practices. A special emphasis will be put on avoiding any harm to non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and banks by exposing any sensitive or misleading information.

Target: People working in NGOs affected by sanctions and wider financial regulations, including anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist financing (CFT).

Problematic: Financial limitations and banking challenges faced by NGOs (Syrian and non-Syrian alike) and INGOs regarding sanctions, anti-terror financial and banking laws and restrictions, and hosting countries’ regulations.

Geographical Scope of Research: Turkey, Lebanon, Kurdistan Iraq, INGOS and NGOs (Syrian and non-Syrian) in some European countries working on Syria and within the country.

Research Methodology

In addition to the secondary data accessed through open-source and privately-shared resources available on the matter, primary data was also gathered through extensive interviews with around 50 individuals from NGOs, INGOs, EU and member states officials, and experts in banking and sanctions. A standardised survey was also distributed and answered to around twenty Syrian diaspora NGOs based in various countries (Lebanon, Turkey, Kurdistan Iraq, Germany, France, Great Britain, Belgium). The majority of interviews were conducted over skype and on the phone (more than 30), while the rest were carried out in emails, especially for the NGOs which answered the survey. NGOs and INGOs based in Syria have been interviewed as well.

Many interviews with organizations and EU and member states have been conducted on the condition of anonymity.

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