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UPR of Japan (HRC37, 2018, OS)

Date : 2018.03.19

IMADR statement on “UPR of Japan” at the 37th session of the Human Rights Council. Whole text can be read below or download in English  and Japanese 

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IMADR Oral Statement: 37th session of the Human Rights Council

Item 6: UPR outcome of Japan

19 March 2018

Speaker: Taisuke KOMATSU

Thank you Mr. President,

IMADR delivers this statement in solidarity with the Japan NGO Network for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (ERD Net). To call for support of the UPR recommendations concerning the racial discrimination issues, we handed in the appeal to the Minister for Foreign Affairs Taro Kono in this January.[1]

We regret that the Government of Japan failed to support the recommendations on adopting a comprehensive anti-discrimination law in spite of the demand from civil society and many recommending States. The existing Japanese law falls short in providing effective protection from racial discrimination, therefore national civil society, including minority and indigenous groups, has been demanding legislative changes in line with the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD) and the recommendations from its Committee[2].

We welcome the Government’s support to the recommendations on: establishing an independent national human rights institution; accepting most of treaty bodies’ individual complaints procedures; and ratifying the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families. However, we would like to point out that the Government supported same recommendations in the previous UPR cycles but it has not implemented them for 10 years.

While it is welcoming that many recommendations concerning racial discrimination such as on the Technical Intern Training Programme and violence against foreign, minority and indigenous persons were supported by the Government, we regret that it did not accept the specific recommendations on minority ethnic Koreans and the people of Ryukyu/ Okinawa. The Government’s claim regarding Korean schools[3] fails to consider discrimination in effect. Similarly, the Government’s response to the recommendations on the people of Ryukyu/ Okinawa overlooks structural discrimination and human rights violations they continue to suffer.

Against this backdrop, we urge the Government of Japan to fully support the noted recommendations. We further call upon the Government of Japan to design a concrete national action plan for the implementation of the UPR recommendations. We also request the Government of Japan to meaningfully cooperate with civil society in designing of such an action plan and implementation of the UPR recommendations.

Thank you Mr. President.

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[1] Japan NGO Network for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (ERD Net) (24 January 2018), Appeal for support to and implementation of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) recommendations, http://imadr.org/japan-civil-society-appeal-upr-24jan2018/

[2] CERD/C/JPN/CO/7-9

[3] A/HRC/37/15/Add.1, paragraph. 161.151

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