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Race, Racism and the Law 
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Hate Crimes

NGO Forum, World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination
Xenophobia and Related Intolerance, Durban, South Africa, August 27-Sept 1, 2001

This page is part of much larger document. Please be sure to read the Overview, the Declaration-Guiding Principles, Programme of Action-Guiding Principles, and Programme of Action - Legal Measures which provide the context for understanding this page. Click here to Download Word Document.




126. Members of marginalized and minority communities are targeted for hate crimes including burning of places of worship and religious symbols, sexual violence, desecration of places of worship, cemeteries and other sacred places. Violence against the leaders of such communities is of particular concern.

127. Hate crimes target individuals because of their identity and decimate lives and communities, stigmatizing individuals and communities, robbing people of personal security, promoting fear, constraining lifestyles and participation in all aspects of society, causing psychological and physical harm, repressing and silencing demands for justice and self-determination, undermining peace and democracy, and reinforcing racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance. Women are particularly vulnerable to some forms of hate crimes, especially sexual violence.

128. Many peoples and members of marginalized and minority communities are subjected to hate crimes and/or ethnic cleansing as they attempt to exercise their right to self-determination, including the Kurdish, Chechen, Tibetan, Acehnese and West Papuan people, and Indigenous Peoples.

129. Hate crimes, ethnic cleansing and genocide include violence and murder, rape and other sexual violence, racist propaganda, incitements to violence, race riots, massacres, disappearances of members of communities advocating for social change and self determination and is perpetuated by organized hate groups, military, police, religious entities, governments, and individuals.

130. Ideological genocide has been committed against people in Indonesia in 1965-1966 resulting in the death, disappearance and torture of over 1 million suspected communists. None of the perpetrators or masterminds of this crime against humanity have been brought to justice. As a result, the xenophobic suppression of those expressing left-wing ideology continues to this day in Indonesia.

Programme of Action

345. We urge states to extradite those guilty of hate crimes to face prosecution where appropriate, regardless of nationality.

346. Develop policies and practices which encourage international protection for those suffering from these heinous hate crimes. Monitor and provide effective measures to ensure implementation of human rights laws and UN conventions against hate crimes including sexual violence and promote policies and practices that delegitimize racist hate propaganda and hate groups.

347. Encourage identification of the new issues within the UN, including to establish a commission and rapporteur desk to inquire into the issues raised here such as ethnic cleansing, ethnic conflicts, ideological and cultural Daliticide, hate crimes, and establish offices in different areas of the world.

348. Consider more powerful means (such as embargoes, economic sanctions) of dealing with recalcitrant states that continue to perpetrate hate crimes, ethnic cleansing and genocide, and promote and require protection for those involved in religious organizations operating in any oppressive conditions

349. Encourage the UN to set up and fully fund a body to deal with propaganda and media distortion related to racism and racial discrimination, hate crimes, systematic ethnic cleansing, and genocide. Also require that education and training about discrimination, hate crimes, ethnic cleansing and genocide is provided by governments and the UN to enable the liberation of oppressed people and to increase understanding of these heinous crimes in the international community, including requiring offices in the regions outside Geneva and New York. Require the UN to monitor and agitate for this.

350. NGOs should agitate for national legislation to combat hate crimes and violence and punish the perpetrators of such acts as well as push for a serious UN response to hate crimes.

351. All political parties must promote inclusive policies and prohibit the use of negative images of race, ethnicity, religion, language and caste.

352. It is important to monitor education to ensure it is inclusive and prevents perpetuation of discrimination and hate crimes and also to monitor media for accusations, generalisations, stigmatization, stereotyping and bias of particular racial and ethnic minorities, indigenous peoples, castes, especially women, children, those with disabilities, religious minorities and communities advocating for social change and self determination other groups being targeted by hate crimes

353. NGOs must form a coalition with others suffering from discrimination to fight hate crimes against members their own communities. It is important to get assistance, gain knowledge and get advice from those in other countries who have already formed such coalitions.

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Copyright @ 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001. Vernellia R. Randall
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