OHCHR / ELIMINATION RACIAL DISCRIMINATION

30-Aug-2022 00:04:38
At the press conference in Geneva, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination issued findings on Azerbaijan, Benin, Nicaragua, Slovakia, Suriname, the United States of America and Zimbabwe after reviewing the States parties in its latest session. UNTV CH
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STORY: OHCHR / ELIMINATION RACIAL DISCRIMINATION
TRT: 4:39
SOURCE: UNTV CH
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH/NATS

DATELINE: 30 AUGUST 2022 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND
SHOTLIST
1. Wide shot, exterior of Alley of flags Palais des Nations
2. SOUNDBITE (English) Pansy Tlakula, Member of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on the USA:
“The Committee was concerned that racial and ethnic minorities are disproportionally impacted by higher maternal mortality and morbidity rates, higher risk of unwanted pregnancies and lack of means to overcome socioeconomic barriers to access safe abortion. Regarding the Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs v JWHO in June, the Committee was deeply concerned about the disparate impact on the sexual and reproductive health and rights of racial and ethnic minorities, particularly those with low incomes. It recommended that the State party take further steps to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in sexual and reproductive health and rights. It also requested that the State party adopt measures to address the profound disparate impact of Dobbs v JWHO on women of racial and ethnic minorities, Indigenous women and those with low incomes.”
3. Med shot, participants in press conference
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Pansy Tlakula, Member of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination:
“The Committee expressed concern over the brutality and use of excessive or deadly force by law enforcement officials against racial and ethnic minorities and the continued impunity for abuses by Police and Customs and Border Protection officers. The Committee urged the State party to review federal and state legislation regulating the use of lethal force by law enforcement officials to ensure that they are in line with international law and standards. It also asked the USA to create or strengthen independent oversight bodies to ensure accountability of law enforcement officials for inappropriate use of force.”
5. Med shot, participants in press conference
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Mehrdad Payandeh Member of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on Azerbaijan:
“In particular with regards to the hostilities which took place in 2020, the Committee was deeply concerned about allegations of grave human rights violations committed by the Azerbaijani military forces against prisoners of war and other protected persons of Armenian ethnic or national origin. It was also disturbed by reports on the destruction of Armenian cultural heritage, including churches, monuments, landmarks and cemeteries. The committee therefore made a number of recommendations to Azerbaijan. Including the recommendation to conduct thorough and impartial investigations of all human violations and strengthen its efforts to ensure accountability and end impunity.”
7. Med shot, participants in press conference
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Pansy Tlakula, Member of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on Benin:
“The Committee was concerned about reports that people with albinism are often subjected to extreme physical attacks, stigmatisation and discrimination based on beliefs related to witchcraft and skin colour. It urged Benin to take effective measures to protect people with albinism from violence, abduction and stigmatisation, and to ensure that they have equal access to education, health and employment.”
9. Med shot, participants in press conference
10. SOUNDBITE (English) Pansy Tlakula, Member of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on Zimbabwe:
“The Committee was disturbed by reports that the Gukurahundi atrocities, which resulted in the killing of around 20,000 Ndebele speakers in the 1980s, continue to be a source of ethnic tension, with many victims remaining traumatized and barred from participating in mourning and commemorative activities by State agents. It urged Zimbabwe to take measures to ensure that mourning and commemorative activities can be conducted without restrictions or threats. It also called on the State party to ensure that the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission fulfils its responsibilities to provide a platform for post-conflict public truth-telling.”
STORYLINE
At the press conference today in Geneva, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination issued findings on Azerbaijan, Benin, Nicaragua, Slovakia, Suriname, the United States of America and Zimbabwe after reviewing the States parties in its latest session.

The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination monitors States parties’ adherence to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, which, to date has 182 States parties. The Committee is made up of 18 members who are independent human rights experts drawn from around the world, who serve in their personal capacity and not as representatives of States parties.

The findings contain the Committee's main concerns and recommendations on the implementation of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, as well as positive aspects.

On the United States, Ms Pansy Tlakula, Committee Member said “The Committee was concerned that racial and ethnic minorities are disproportionally impacted by higher maternal mortality and morbidity rates, higher risk of unwanted pregnancies and lack of means to overcome socioeconomic barriers to access safe abortion. Regarding the Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs v JWHO in June, the Committee was deeply concerned about the disparate impact on the sexual and reproductive health and rights of racial and ethnic minorities, particularly those with low incomes. It recommended that the State party take further steps to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in sexual and reproductive health and rights. It also requested that the State party adopt measures to address the profound disparate impact of Dobbs v JWHO on women of racial and ethnic minorities, Indigenous women and those with low incomes.” Adding “The Committee expressed concern over the brutality and use of excessive or deadly force by law enforcement officials against racial and ethnic minorities and the continued impunity for abuses by Police and Customs and Border Protection officers. The Committee urged the State party to review federal and state legislation regulating the use of lethal force by law enforcement officials to ensure that they are in line with international law and standards. It also asked the USA to create or strengthen independent oversight bodies to ensure accountability of law enforcement officials for inappropriate use of force.”

On Azerbaijan, Mehrdad Payandeh committee member said “In particular with regards to the hostilities which took place in 2020 and beyond, the Committee was deeply concerned about allegations of grave human rights violations committed by the Azerbaijani military forces against prisoners of war and other protected persons of Armenian ethnic or national origin. It was also disturbed by reports on the destruction of Armenian cultural heritage, including churches, monuments, landmarks and cemeteries. The committee therefore made a number of recommendations to Azerbaijan, including measures to conduct thorough and impartial investigations of all human violations and strengthen its efforts to ensure accountability and end impunity.”

On Benin, Ms Pansy Tlakula, committee member said “ The Committee was concerned about reports that people with albinism are often subjected to extreme physical attacks, stigmatisation and discrimination based on beliefs related to witchcraft and skin colour. It urged Benin to take effective measures to protect people with albinism from violence, abduction and stigmatisation, and to ensure that they have equal access to education, health and employment.”


On Zimbabwe, Ms Pansy Tlakula, committee member said “The Committee was disturbed by reports that the Gukurahundi atrocities, which resulted in the killing of around 20,000 Ndebele speakers in the 1980s, continue to be a source of ethnic tension, with many victims remaining traumatized and barred from participating in mourning and commemorative activities by State agents. It urged Zimbabwe to take measures to ensure that mourning and commemorative activities can be conducted without restrictions or threats. It also called on the State party to ensure that the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission fulfils its responsibilities to provide a platform for post-conflict public truth-telling.”
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