Middle East & North Africa

Middle East & North Africa Division Intern


Washington, DC (United States)

Position Type



Spring 2018


ID Reference



The Middle East and North Africa (“MENA”) division of Human Rights Watch (“HRW”) is currently seeking student interns for the spring 2018 academic semester in the Washington, D.C. office. The selected candidate will intern closely with the Middle East and North Africa associates and researchers. Ideally, the intern will be available part-time for three months, beginning as soon as possible. 

The internship is unpaid. Students are often able to arrange academic credit, as HRW internships often offer direct exposure to the workings of an international human rights organization, close supervision by the HRW staff, interaction with international organizations and foreign and domestic government officials, and opportunities to attend lectures, trainings and special events relating to human rights. Students should check with their individual academic institutions for requirements.


The internship will focus on the following: 
  • Research: The intern will be given various short-term and long-term desk research assignments using sources in English and Arabic. Research will focus on a range of human rights and humanitarian law abuses across the Middle East and North Africa. The intern may help HRW staff conduct phone interviews with victims of and witnesses to human rights violations. The intern will also contribute to the production and release of reports and press releases. 
  • Monitoring and Advocacy: The intern will focus on monitoring and summarizing MENA political and policy developments. The intern will also have the opportunity to attend internal and/or external advocacy strategy meetings. 

Other assignments and projects will be assigned as the opportunity arises. 


This internship is open to students in law, social studies, international relations, political science, or related subjects with strong writing and research skills. Applicants must be enrolled students for the duration of the internship term. Excellent oral and written command of English and Arabic are essential. Applicants should demonstrate precise attention to detail, conscientiousness about checking one’s own work, a positive attitude, a proactive approach, and good judgment. Applicants should be well-organized, self-motivated, and reliable with a strong interest in human rights and some familiarity with the current situation in MENA. Computer skills (i.e., Microsoft Office, internet applications) are required. 

Applicants who are offered an internship, but who are not US permanent residents, US citizens, or in possession of a valid student visa, must apply for a J-1 visa through a sponsoring organization. This process can take several weeks and applicants will have to incur their own costs.

Equal Opportunity Employer

Diverse teams are strong teams. HRW includes a mix of genders, parents and non-parents, the self-taught, and people of multiple races, nationalities, ages, and socio-economic backgrounds. We encourage candidates of all races, genders, ages, abilities, orientations, ethnicities, and national origins to apply, and welcome those with alternative backgrounds and experiences. Human Rights Watch is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate in its hiring practices and actively seeks a diverse applicant pool.

About Human Rights Watch

Human Rights Watch is an international human rights monitoring and advocacy organization known for its in-depth investigations, its incisive and timely reporting, its innovative and high-profile advocacy campaigns, and its success in changing the human rights-related policies and practices of influential governments and international institutions.

Are you the right person for the opportunity?

Click here to Apply Now

Go back to results, or start a new search