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Countering racial and ethnic hatred in politics (HRC40, 2019, OS)

Date : 2019.03.15

IMADR delivered the oral statement on “Countering racial and ethnic hatred in politics” at the 40th session of the Human Rights Council. Whole text can be read below or download here


IMADR Oral Statement: 40th session of the Human Rights Council

Debate on the mitigation and countering of rising nationalist populism and extreme supremacist ideologies

15 March 2019

Speaker: Taisuke KOMATSU

Thank you Mr. President,

At the outset, we express our sincere condolences to the families and friends of the victims of the shooting at two mosques which took place today in Christchurch, New Zealand.

We welcome this annual panel discussion to commemorate the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. Today’s discussion is particularly timely and relevant to the current state of world affairs. However, we are concerned by the choice of the terminologies “nationalist populism” and “extreme supremacist ideologies”, instead of calling them racism and racist ideologies. Careful consideration must be given to the choice of words in order to avoid sugar-coating racial discrimination.

We strongly condemn the abuse of freedom of speech by politicians and those wishing to enter politics who spread the lies of racial/ethnic superiority and hatred among the society. Such speeches should be punished in accordance with Article 4 of the International Convention for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD) and the General Recommendation No. 35. We are increasingly concerned that in this Chamber we have repeatedly heard the denial of the principles of equality and non-discrimination. Following his statement against national human rights NGOs and migration at the last Council session,[1] the Hungarian Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó linked migration and terrorism in his speech at the High Level Segment two weeks ago,[2] effectively promoting racial and ethnic hatred against migrants at this international platform serving for the promotion and protection of human rights. The lack of appropriate public responses from the Human Rights Council to the both instances is very alarming.

Against this backdrop, we would like to ask the panellists – what action should be taken by the Human Rights Council to ensure that the right to freedom of expression in this Chamber is exercised for countering hatred and promoting inclusion and the right to equality and non-discrimination?

Thank you Mr. President.


[1] UN Web TV (19 September 2018),

[2] UN Web TV (25 February 2019),

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