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Fight against racism, anti-Semitism and xenophobia

France and the fight against racism, anti-Semitism and xenophobia

At the international level

France is party to the International Convention on All Forms of Racial Discrimination. As a State Party, France is required to report periodically to the Committee (CERD) on its progress towards implementation of the Convention’s provisions.

France is also an active and vigilant participant in the follow-up process to the World Conference on Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance, held in Durban in 2001. The aim of the follow-up mechanism is to assess progress made in combating racial discrimination, raising awareness of racism and its consequences and formulating consensus-based recommendations to the United Nations and to States.

At European level

France supports the work of the Council of Europe, which deals with this issue through the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI), and that of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). As a member of OSCE, France particularly supports the programmes implemented by the Tolerance and Non-Discrimination Department of the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR).

France was also active in supporting the adoption of the framework decision on combating certain forms and expressions of racism and xenophobia by means of criminal law, proposed by the European Commission in 2001 and adopted on 28 November 2008 under France’s Presidency of the Council of European Union.

At national level

In accordance with the recommendations of the Committee for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) and its commitments as a signatory to the Convention, France adopted a national plan of action against racism and anti-Semitism in February 2012 and appointed an inter-ministerial delegate to combat racism and anti-Semitism. The delegate’s task is to coordinate the work of the various government departments and ensure the consistency of government action on the ground, and to provide impetus, make proposals and assess progress. The delegate is also responsible for the coordination and implementation of the national plan of action and for organising the meetings of the Inter-Ministerial Committee to Fight Racism and Anti-Semitism (CILRA), set up in 2003.

On the legal front, France has gradually built up a body of criminal legislation that sets an example to the world, and has developed a policy for education, culture and sports that addresses every aspect of the fight against racism and anti-Semitism and promotes real equality of opportunity.

Updated on : 01.03.13

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