UN experts condemn racist violence in US, urge investigations

UN experts condemn racist violence in US, urge investigations
Protestors make their way north on Fifth Avenue as they march against white supremacy and racism, August 13, 2017 in New York City. 32-year-old Heather Heyer was killed in Charlottesville on Saturday when a car driven by a white supremacist barreled into a crowd of counter-protesters following violence at the Unite the Right rally. (AFP)
Updated 16 August 2017

UN experts condemn racist violence in US, urge investigations

UN experts condemn racist violence in US, urge investigations

GENEVA: UN human rights experts called on the US on Wednesday to combat rising racist violence and xenophobia and to prosecute perpetrators of hate crimes.
“We are outraged by the violence in Charlottesville and the racial hatred displayed by right-wing extremists, white supremacists and neo-Nazi groups,” the independent UN experts said in a joint statement issued in Geneva.
“We call for the prosecution and adequate punishment of all perpetrators and the prompt establishment of an independent investigation into the events ... Acts of hatred and racist hate speech must be unequivocally condemned. Hate crimes must be investigated and the perpetrators prosecuted.”
The events in Virginia were the “latest examples” of increasing racism, racial discrimination, Afrophobia, racist violence and xenophobia “observed in demonstrations across the USA,” the UN experts said.
Recent incidents in California, Oregon, New Orleans and Kentucky had demonstrated “the geographical spread of the problem,” they added.
The statement was issued by Sabelo Gumedze, chair of the UN working group of experts on people of African descent, Mutuma Ruteere, UN special rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, and Anastasia Crickley, chair of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
On Monday a UN human rights panel urged the US to end widespread detention of would-be immigrants including asylum-seekers, saying the practice had “grown exponentially” and violated international law.