Forum addressing atrocity crimes against minorities

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Members of an ethnic Yezidi family sleep in the shade in Shekhadi village, Iraq, after fleeing Sinjar. Photo: UNHCR/N. Colt

The international community is being urged to prevent violence and crimes against minorities.

On Wednesday, the seventh session of the Forum on Minority Issues is continuing its second day of work in Geneva to support national or ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities.

In a video message, UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson said the world has a duty to draw lessons from horrific events perpetrated against minority groups, such as the Yezidis in Iraq this past year.

” We must prevent them from being repeated. We cannot continue to say "never again" – in itself a recognition of failure. The United Nations as a whole and all Member States must renew our commitments and intensify our efforts to promote and protect minority rights worldwide.”

Mr Eliasson added that the forum will help understand the nature of these crimes and their root causes.

He said the protection of minority rights is also a crucial way of achieving development for the poorest and most vulnerable.

Stephanie Coutrix, United Nations.

Duration: 1’04″

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