Prevention of racial discrimination, including early warning measures and urgent
action procedures : Guyana. 03/06/2003.
Convention Abbreviation: CERD
COMMITTEE ON THE ELIMINATION
OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION
3-21 March 2003
PREVENTION OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION, INCLUDING EARLY
WARNING MEASURES AND URGENT ACTION PROCEDURES*
Decision 2 (62)
1. The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination notes that Guyana has submitted a second periodic report to the Human Rights Committee and an initial report to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, but it regrets that Guyana, which ratified the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination in 1977, has not to date submitted any report to the Committee.
2. The Committee recalls that the purpose of the system whereby States parties submit reports is to establish and maintain a dialogue with the Committee on the action taken, the progress made and the difficulties encountered in complying with obligations arising out of the Convention. It also observes that the State party's failure to honour its reporting obligations under article 9 of the Convention is a serious impediment to the efficient operation of the monitoring system established under the Convention.
3. The Committee draws the attention of the State party to the Declaration and Programme of Action of the World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance, according to which the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination is the principal international instrument for the elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance and States are urged to cooperate with the Committee in order to promote the effective implementation of the Convention.
4. The Committee recognizes the difficult economic and social conditions facing Guyana and remains deeply concerned about the extensive political and ethnic conflicts which have aggravated the situation in the country and led to serious clashes.
5. Many intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and United Nations agencies agree that the vicious circle of political and ethnic tensions has brought Guyana to a state of political instability which has adversely affected human rights, weakened civil society, increased racial violence and poverty and exclusion among indigenous population groups, and hampered both the administration of justice and the application of human rights standards.
6. While the Committee has acceded to the State party's request to submit its initial report in March 2004, it wishes to emphasize that, in the light of the urgent character of the situation outlined above, it may decide to request and discuss information on the state of racial discrimination in Guyana under its early warning and urgent action procedure even earlier.
21 March 2003
* Please note that the symbol CERD/C/Session No./Dec/No. will from now on identify decisions adopted by the Committee.