Home International News Africa Rights experts call for second UN Decade for People of African Descent

Rights experts call for second UN Decade for People of African Descent

PAHO The International Day for People of African Descent was celebrated for the first time on 31 August 2021.

Human rights experts on Wednesday urged the UN General Assembly to declare a second International Decade for People of African Descent starting in 2025 as more action is needed to combat racism and other intolerance. 

They stressed that more than ever, the world urgently needs humanity to unite and collaborate in a spirit of equality and non-discrimination.

Channel 1

“This demands political will to eliminate all forms of racial discrimination, inequality and stratification at both the domestic and international levels,” they said in a statement.

Achieving this goal means that inequalities within and among countries will need to be drastically decreased, and the legacies of colonialism, apartheid, enslavement and genocide effectively resolved, they added.

‘A cause for humanity’ 

The General Assembly proclaimed 2015 to 2024 as the International Decade for People of African Descent, with actions at the national, regional and global levels.

Objectives include promoting respect, protection and fulfilment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by people of African Descent, and greater knowledge of their diverse heritage, culture and contributions to society.

“The cause of people of African descent for recognition, justice and development is a cause for humanity,” the experts stated.

Sustain the momentum

They said the UN Decade, together with the International Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action, have contributed significantly to combatting racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia, and related intolerance.

“However, there is much more work to be done and the momentum gained must be sustained,” they said.

They urged the General Assembly to consider proclaiming a second International Decade for People of African Descent from 2025 to 2034, “with a view to taking further action to address systemic discrimination and legacies of the past to bring about the full recognition, justice, and development for people of African descent worldwide.”

‘Pervasive discrimination’ persists

The 13 experts were appointed by the UN Human Rights Council and are not UN staff, nor are they paid for their work.

They issued their appeal on the eve of the International Day for People of African Descent.

In his message for the Day, UN Secretary-General António Guterres highlighted “the enormous impact” that both the African continent and people of African descent have had on the development, diversity and richness of world civilizations and cultures, which constitute the common heritage of humankind.

“At the same time, we acknowledge the pervasive discrimination faced by people of African descent around the world, and the many obstacles they face to realising their full human rights,” he said.

Website | + posts