Open letter to the organisers of the Non Governmental Organisations Forum of the World Conference against Racism

Open brief aan de organisatoren van het NGO-forum op de wereldconferentie tegen racisme

In de media is uitgebreid bericht over het ongunstige verloop van de antiracismeconferentie in Durban, Zuid-Afrika. Onderstaand een open brief van een aantal Nederlandse organisaties die in Durban aanwezig zijn. Zij distantiŽren zich onder meer van antisemitische uitlatingen die op de conferentie zijn gedaan.

Open letter to the organisers of the Non Governmental Organisations Forum of the World Conference against Racism

Since principles of equality and respect for each other are fundamental for living together, they constitute an important starting point for the Non Governmental Organisations (NGO) Forum at the World Conference against Racism (WCAR) in Durban. Moreover, respect for differences of opinion is essential in the struggle against racism.

It was the responsibility of the organisers of the NGO Forum to ensure that the opinion of every participant is respected. Part of this responsibility is to ensure the recognition of the independence of delegations from policies of governments.

To our great dismay the undersigned Dutch NGOs affirm that not all the participants of the NGO Forum have been treated in a respectful manner. In our opinion this is a flagrant breach of the principles that should guide a meeting of this nature.

The human and political tragedy that is unfolding in Israel and the Palestinian territories is beyond our comprehension. While we fully understand the emotions of people who feel involved with one of the two parties in this conflict, it is incomprehensible that such emotions should be translated into expressions of anti-Semitism and hate-speech.

We appeal to the organisers of the NGO forum to openly distance themselves from incidents of this nature, which occurred during the NGO Forum.

We believe that there is no place for anti-Semitism or related forms of intolerance at a World Conference against Racism.

Signing organisations / De brief is ondertekend door:
De Landelijke Vereniging van Antidiscriminatie Bureaus en Meldpunten
LBR (Landelijk Bureau ter bestrijding van Rassendiscriminatie)
RADAR (Rotterdamse Anti Discriminatie Actie Raad)
Stichting Magenta
Vrouwenbond FNV

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