African countries are urging the UN Human Rights Council to investigate systemic racism and police violence in the United States, according to a draft resolution revealed June 16. Diplomats received the resolution ahead of a debate at the Human Rights Council in Geneva that will be held this week on the question, convened at the request of Burkina Faso. The debate is a response to the death of George Floyd and others in police custody, as well as the ongoing protests across the US. The draft resolution calls for the establishment of an independent international commission of inquiry (COI)—a measure normally used in response to a major crisis, such as the armed conflict in Syria. The resolution states that the COI should be empowered to “establish facts and circumstances related to the systemic racism, alleged violations of international human rights law and abuses against Africans and of people of African descent in the United States.”
The resolution additionally states that the commission should investigate “the federal, state and local government responses to peaceful protests, including the alleged use of excessive force against protesters, bystanders and journalists.”
A vote by the 47-member council is due once a final text version of the resolution is tabled for 24 hours.
From Jurist, June 16. Used with permission.
Photo: The Village Sun