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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Religious Hate Crimes, Racist Discourse Rising Amid COVID-19: UN Secretary

Secretary-General Warns in Observance Message, Urging Greater Inclusion, Respect for Diversity

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UNITED STATES. New York. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres message for the International Day Commemorating the Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief, observed on 22 August.

The right to freedom of religion or belief is firmly trenched in international human rights law and is a cornerstone for inclusive, prosperous and peaceful societies.

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While societies have shown resilience and strength in the face of COVID-19, many people continue to witness deep-seated discrimination against religious minorities, attacks on religious sites,etc. 

Societies must do more to address the root causes of intolerance and discrimination by promoting inclusion and respect for diversity.  

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People must also ensure that the perpetrators of these crimes are held accountable.

States have the primary responsibility to protect the right to freedom of religion and belief.  “I have also made this a priority through initiatives such as a Call to Action for Human Rights, a Strategy on Hate Speech and a Plan of Action to Safeguard Religious Sites.” says Guterres.

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This extraordinary moment calls on all of us to work together as one human family to defeat a disease and put an end to hate and discrimination, stated by UN Secretary-General.

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