Today, the world is confronted with an upsurge of new and contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerances. Religious communities are vilified and ethnic minorities are physically targeted, and migrants demonized. Recent reports have also documented an alarming increase in racially and religiously motivated crimes.
It is regrettable that xenophobic political discourse and ideologically motivated hate speech for inciting religious and racial hatred is being practiced in the garb of patriotism and promotion of democratic values in many parts of the world. We believe that there is an urgent need to strengthen the legal framework for addressing hate speech and xenophobia.
Pakistan remained in the forefront of struggle against apartheid and colonialism. It played a lead role in the elaboration of ICERD and was one of its first signatories. In line with our strong commitment to eliminate the scourge of racism from the world, Pakistan actively participated in the Durban World Conference and Durban Review Conference held in 2001 and 2009 respectively. Since then, we had been actively participating in the deliberations of all Durban mechanisms. Besides, we have been cosponsor of resolutions in the General Assembly and Human Rights Council regarding global efforts to combat racism.
Pakistan’s commitment to the elimination of racial discrimination in all its forms and manifestations is reflected in our Constitution and in our policies. We continue to play an active role in the elimination of new and contemporary forms of racism and xenophobia.
We urge the international community to join hands in implementing the normative framework for the elimination of racism, racial and religious discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerances and constructively engage with all human rights mechanisms deal with these issues.
I thank you.