Senior African UN leaders issue rare public call to end racism


A group of more than 20 senior African leaders in the United Nations have called on the world body to “go beyond and do more” to end systemic racism.

“Not enough can ever be said about the deep trauma and inter-generational suffering that has resulted from the racial injustice perpetrated through centuries, particularly against people of African descent. To merely condemn expressions and acts of racism is not enough,” the group said in an opinion piece released Sunday.

The signatories include World Health Organization head Tedros Ghebreyesus, and the Executive-Director of UNAIDS, Winnie Byanyima, among other high profile UN leaders.

“Now is the time to move from words to deeds,” the op-ed said.

The group said that they owe it to George Floyd and other victims of systemic racism to and police brutality “to dismantle racist institutions,” saying that Floyd’s killing is “rooted in a wider and intractable set of issues that will not disappear if we ignore them.”

“It is time for the United Nations to step up and act decisively to help end systemic racism against people of African descent and other minority groups ‘in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion’ as stipulated in Article 1 of the UN Charter,” the group said.

Source: CNN