The 21st of March every year commemorates International Day against Racism, a day when the people across the globe show their opposition to racism.
It is held as part of the European-wide Action Week against Racism on the 17th-25th March. March 21st commemorates the Sharpeville massacre in South Africa in 1969 and provides an opportunity for people throughout the world to take action against racism.
Many youth organisations run activities and programmes which challenge racism and promote interculturalism. Bringing a global perspective to these issues enables young people to see racism in a wider context and promotes empathy and solidarity towards young people from different cultures.
This Year as requested by the General Assembly, Presidents of the General Assembly and of the Human Rights Council will convene meetings both in New York and Geneva during the commemoration of the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination through a debate on the state of racial discrimination worldwide.
This year’s theme is “learning from historical tragedies to combat racial discrimination today”. It aims to explore the root causes of racism and racial discrimination and will stress the essential need to learn the lessons history has provided in order to combat racism and racial discrimination today.
In Geneva, a panel event and a movie screening will take place at the Palais des Nations on the 20th of March 2015. Panellists will speak at the Human Rights Council about the importance of preserving the historical memory of past human rights tragedies, including slavery, the slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, apartheid, colonialism and genocide which have led to racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance. They will explore the need of elaborating educational and awareness raising materials with a view to contribute to eradicating contemporary forms of racism and racial discrimination.
In New York, the same day, a panel event will take place at the United Nations Headquarters, with the participation of academics, including historians and experts from the civil society, active in the field of racism and racial discrimination.
In Ireland on March 21st, a march will be taking place in Dublin at 11:30am at the Central Bank Plaza Dame to support the fight against racism.
Various events and negative developments around the world show us the importance of fighting against every type of racism, hatred at every level and promote unity and solidarity among people.