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U.S. Reservations, Understandings and Declarations

United States Report on Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination,
  Initial Country Report (Sept, 2000). 

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Vernellia R. Randall
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The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, Initial Report of the United States of America to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, September 2000


To ensure that U.S. law and policy were consonant with the obligations that it would assume under the Convention, the United States entered certain reservations, understandings and declarations to the Convention at the time of ratification. These related, inter alia, to: (a) the Convention's prohibitions concerning advocacy and incitement, which to a certain extent are more restrictive than U.S. constitutional guarantees of free expression and association, (b) the Convention's requirements to restrict the activities of private persons and non-governmental entities, which in some instances lie beyond the reach of existing U.S. law, and (c) the express extension of the Convention's restrictions to all levels of political organization, which implicates the delicate relationship between the state and Federal governments in the U.S. political system. While these differences were primarily ones of approach rather than substance, each nonetheless required clarification in the context of U.S. ratification of the Convention.

In making these clarifications, the United States took particular note of Article 20, which precludes reservations which are "incompatible with the object and purpose of the Convention" or "the effect of which would inhibit the operation of any of the bodies established by the Convention." The United States believes its reservations, understandings and declarations, which are an essential element of its consent to be bound by this instrument, are compatible with its object and purpose; they also do not inhibit the operation of any bodies established by the Convention. The United States fully supports the goals of the Convention. In any event, paragraph 2 of Article 20 provides an authoritative method of determining whether any reservation is incompatible or inhibitive in relation to this Convention; namely, formal objection thereto by at least two-thirds of the States Parties to the Convention. None of the conditions imposed upon U.S. ratification of this Convention have been objected to in that manner.

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Same level:
Introduction ] General Report ] Legal Prohibition ] [ U.S. Reservations, Understandings and Declarations ] Compliance with Specific Articles ] Article 1 - Racial Discrimination ] Article 2 ] Art 3 Condemn Racial Segregation and Apartheid ] Article 4 Eliminate Incitements or Acts of Discrimination ] Article 5 Equality Under the Law ] Article 6 Assure Effective Protection and Remedies ] Article 7 Adopt Measures ] Conclusion ]
Child Level:
Home ] Freedom of Speech ] Private Conduct ] Dispute Settlement ] Federalism ] Non Self-executing Treaty ]
Parent Level:
US CERD Report - Content ]
[Race and Racial Groups] [Citizenship Rights]  [Justice and Race] [Patterns of Basic Needs] [Intersectionality Issues] [Human Rights]

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