Go back to the Europarl portal

Choisissez la langue de votre document :

WORD 41k
See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B5-0605/2001
27 September 2001
PE 309.491
further to the Council and Commission statements
pursuant to Rule 37(2) of the Rules of Procedure
by Thierry Cornillet
on behalf of the PPE-DE Group
and Baroness Sarah Ludford
on behalf of the ELDR Group
on the World Conference against Racism in Durban

European Parliament resolution on the World Conference against Racism in Durban 

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to Articles 6, 7 and 29 of the Treaty on European Union and Article 13 of the EC Treaty which commit the European Union and its Member States to observe high standards of human rights and non-discrimination, and to the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union,

–  having regard to the 1966 International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, the 1995 Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities and the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms,

–  having regard to Council Directive 2000/43/EC of 29 July 2000 which further implements equal treatment between persons irrespective of racial or ethnic origin,

–  having regard to the EU’s preparations for the World Conference, in particular the European Parliament recommendation on the European Union’s position at the World Conference, adopted by Parliament in July 2001,

–  having regard to the declaration adopted by the European Preparatory Conference "All Different-All Equal" in Strasbourg on 13 October 2000,

–   having regard to the interinstitutional framework agreement of 5 July 2000,

A.  whereas the European Union, in developing an area of freedom, security and justice, not only has a major role alongside Member States in efforts to root out racism and racial discrimination within the EU but also has the opportunity to play a constructive role on the international scene, as racism and discrimination based on race and ethnic origin are fundamentally against the objectives of the EU externally as well as internally,

B.   whereas the World Conference reached political agreement on a final declaration and on an Action Programme on 8 September 2001,

C.   whereas this agreement is the result of challenging and protracted negotiations that nearly failed to achieve consensus, which raises questions about whether there was sufficient precision in the initial agenda and/or sufficient preparation,

D.   whereas those negotiations were particularly difficult because the questions of reparation for victims of slavery and the Middle East conflict dominated and overshadowed the planned proceedings,

E.   whereas the European Union through the Presidency, represented by Louis Michel, President-in-Office, played a pivotal role in the securing the final agreement,

F.  whereas the role which the European Parliament delegation in particular but also the Commission was able to play in the Conference failed to properly or fully reflect the growing EU responsibilities in this field; regretting moreover that because Commissioner Diamantopoulou was unable to attend the Conference and was not replaced by another Commissioner, the Commission was only represented at the level of officials and that not all Member States were represented at the level of senior ministers,

1.   Welcomes the fact that the Conference managed to reach agreement on a final declaration, which will serve as a basis for the worldwide fight against racism and discrimination based on race and ethnic origin;

2.   Congratulates the European Union on managing to steer the Conference to a compromise on the final declaration, in particular through the efforts of the President-in-Office, thus preventing a complete collapse and securing an acceptable outcome, but urges the European Union to continue to develop its international capacity and its preparedness for the expectations held of it;

3.   Regrets the fact that the NGO Forum prior to the World Conference produced a ‘shadow’ declaration which was on some points so extreme in its language and demands that the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson was unable to recommend it to the World Conference, thus weakening the reputation and influence of civil society;

4.   Takes note that the European Union agreed to wordings in the final declaration on slavery, the slave trade and colonialism that went further than initially foreseen in the EU common position, while avoiding the question of reparation for victims of these practices;

5.   Underlines the need to focus on the concrete measures agreed upon in Durban to fight racism, xenophobia and discrimination, and for the European Union to support and facilitate the implementation of the measures through national action plans in the European Union and to take a leading international role in strengthening other countries’ ability to fight racism, xenophobia and discrimination;

6.   Calls for further examination of the way in which the EU can deploy the full weight of its potential influence on international human rights and anti-discrimination work, including levels of political representation and a revision of the interinstitutional framework agreement of 5 July 2000, which should better respond to the increasing responsibilities of the European Union and its institutions in international, notably United Nations, forums;

7.   Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission and the governments and parliaments of the Member States.

Last updated: 6 April 2004Legal notice