General Debate on the Oral Update by the High Commissioner on the situation of human rights worldwide and on the activities of his office.
Item:2 Annual report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and reports of the Office of the High Commissioner and the Secretary-General
19 June 2018
Joint Statement by: International Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (EAFORD) and Geneva International Centre for Justice
Delivered by: Mr. Konstantinos Kakavoulis
We welcome the report of the High Commissioner and his oral update on the human rights situations worldwide.
We remain deeply concerned regarding several violations in Europe.
The emerging number of refugees and asylum seekers has not been adequately treated. Asylum seekers find themselves trapped in South-Eastern Europe, constantly facing the threat of being deported back to their country of origin or Turkey, which cannot always be considered as a safe third country.
While expecting the outcome of their asylum applications, they are subject to very poor reception conditions, while their integration in local societies is far from having been achieved.
EAFORD and Geneva International Centre for Justice stress that the great flux of asylum seekers, as well as the economic and political crises of the past decade, have increased racism and xenophobia. Despite several instruments in place, such as the CERD and DDPA, discrimination persists within home and destination countries.
We should always bear in mind that “no one leaves home unless home is the mouth of a shark.” The Human Rights Council and the international community should work towards ensuring that long-suffering people find -at least- a hospitable ambient, when they reach Europe.
Life is a miracle which has been gifted to all of us. We should always remember that everyone has the right to live, not just to survive.