A Human Rights and Poverty Review : EU Action in Addressing Caste-Based Discrimination

12-02-2013

Caste-based discrimination is a serious human rights violation, negatively affecting political, economic, social, cultural and civil rights of approximately 260 million people worldwide. The European Union is committed to the promotion of human rights within the EU and in its external relations. This brief aims to assess to what extent the EU has integrated the fight against caste-based discrimination in its external relations. Light is shed on the specific situations in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Yemen and the European Union’s actions to address caste-based discrimination in these countries. Based on the analysis, the briefing elaborates recommendations on how the EU can mainstream the fight against caste-based discrimination into policies, strategies and programmes as well as dialogues with caste-affected countries. Legal realities and options for addressing discrimination vary between the partner countries. In order to mainstream the fight against caste-based discrimination, the EU, and the EEAS in particular, should utilize all options with regard to that country, including association agreements as well as partnership and cooperation agreements. Regarding countries that will not receive bilateral aid, the focus should be put on dialogues to address caste-based discrimination. Lessons on mainstreaming can be gained from the European Union’s experience in mainstreaming human rights.

Caste-based discrimination is a serious human rights violation, negatively affecting political, economic, social, cultural and civil rights of approximately 260 million people worldwide. The European Union is committed to the promotion of human rights within the EU and in its external relations. This brief aims to assess to what extent the EU has integrated the fight against caste-based discrimination in its external relations. Light is shed on the specific situations in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Yemen and the European Union’s actions to address caste-based discrimination in these countries. Based on the analysis, the briefing elaborates recommendations on how the EU can mainstream the fight against caste-based discrimination into policies, strategies and programmes as well as dialogues with caste-affected countries. Legal realities and options for addressing discrimination vary between the partner countries. In order to mainstream the fight against caste-based discrimination, the EU, and the EEAS in particular, should utilize all options with regard to that country, including association agreements as well as partnership and cooperation agreements. Regarding countries that will not receive bilateral aid, the focus should be put on dialogues to address caste-based discrimination. Lessons on mainstreaming can be gained from the European Union’s experience in mainstreaming human rights.

Külső szerző

Suzanne Langsdorf (Ecologic Institute, Germany) and Rikke Nohrling (International Dalit Solidarity Network, Denmark)