COMMITTEE ON THE ELIMINATION OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION
REPORTS SUBMITTED BY STATES PARTIES UNDER ARTICLE 9 OF THE CONVENTION
of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
1. The Committee considered the tenth and eleventh periodic reports
of Italy (CERD/C/317/Add.1) at its 1315th and 1316th meetings (CERD/C/SR.1315-1316),
held on 8 and 9 March 1999. At its 1330th meeting, held on 18 March
1999 (CERD/C/SR.1330), it adopted the following concluding observations.
2. The Committee
welcomes the tenth and eleventh periodic reports, submitted in one document,
and the opportunity to resume its dialogue with the State party. The
Committee notes with satisfaction the regularity with which the State
party has submitted its reports to the Committee. The Committee particularly
appreciates the open, fruitful and constructive dialogue with the representatives
of the State party and the additional information provided orally to
the wide range of questions asked by members.
and difficulties impeding the implementation of the Convention
3. The Committee
acknowledges that recent events in neighbouring countries, particularly
the former Yugoslavia and Albania, have resulted in a large and sudden
influx of immigrants to Italy.
C. Positive aspects
4. The Committee
welcomes the stated intention of the State party to reform its law so
that workers who are not citizens of member States of the European Union
(EU) and who leave Italy may request payment of social security contributions
made during the period of their employment in Italy.
5. The Committee
welcomes the adoption of Law 40 of 6 March 1998, aiming at solving globally
and systematically all issues concerning foreigners on Italian territory,
as well as the legal provisions on immigrants and foreigners contained
in Decree-Law 286 of 25 July 1998.
6. The Committee
notes with appreciation the measures taken by the State party to regularize
the situation of a large number of foreigners living in Italy, including
the regularization of de facto family reunifications.
7. The Committee
welcomes the efforts made by the State party in the area of education.
Of particular significance are the measures taken to facilitate access
to education for children of different cultural and linguistic backgrounds.
The Committee also expresses its appreciation for the programmes of
inter-racial tolerance which have been introduced in Italian schools
and the additional subjects offered to non-EU pupils.
8. The Committee
welcomes the statement of the representatives of the State party indicating
the intention of the Government of Italy to ratify article 8, paragraph
6, of the Convention, adopted on 15 January 1992 at the Fourteenth Meeting
of States Parties to the Convention.
D. Principal subjects of concern
was expressed about the continuation of incidents of racial intolerance,
including attacks against foreigners of African origin and against Roma
people, which are sometimes not recognized by the authorities as having
a racial motivation or are not prosecuted.
subject of concern is the lack of information concerning the implementation
of article 6 of the Convention, despite requests to this end made by
the Committee in the concluding observations of the report of the State
party (see A/50/18, para. 105).
11. In light
of reports indicating discrimination against persons of Roma origin,
including children, in a number of areas, in particular housing, concern
is expressed at the situation of many Roma who, ineligible for public
housing, live in camps outside major Italian cities. In addition to
a frequent lack of basic facilities, the housing of Roma in such camps
leads not only to physical segregation of the Roma community from Italian
society, but to political, economic and cultural isolation as well.
is also expressed that in a draft law on minorities presently being
considered by the Senate, the Roma are not considered as a minority
group and thus would not benefit from the protection offered by the
13. In connection
with reports of acts of violence and ill-treatment by police and prison
guards against foreigners and members of minorities in detention, concern
was also expressed about the apparent lack of appropriate training for
law enforcement officials and other public officials regarding the provisions
of the Convention.
E. Suggestions and recommendations
14. The Committee
recommends that the State party strengthen its efforts towards preventing
and prosecuting incidents of racial intolerance and discrimination against
foreigners and Roma people, as well as ill-treatment of foreigners and
Roma in detention.
15. The Committee
also recommends that State authorities give more attention to the situation
of Roma in Italy, with a view to averting discrimination against them.
16. The Committee
recommends that the State party include in its next report statistical
data on the ethnic composition of the country. The Committee would particularly
appreciate data on the percentage of Italian citizens of foreign origin
and the numbers of non-citizens living in Italy.
17. The Committee
recommends that the next report include information on the implementation
of article 6 of the Convention, including the number of cases dealt
with by the relevant authorities and courts of justice.
18. The Committee
recommends that the State party consider intensifying education and
training of law enforcement officials, in accordance with article 7
of the Convention and General Recommendation XIII of the Committee.
19. While acknowledging
the various governmental bodies dealing with minority issues and racial
discrimination, the Committee would welcome the establishment of a national
human rights commission to address such concerns.
20. With regard
to the declarations made by the State party regarding articles 4 and
6 of the Convention, the Committee recommends that the State party consider
withdrawing these declarations.
21. The Committee
recommends that the State party widely disseminate its report and the
present concluding observations. The Committee recommends that the next
periodic report of the State party, due on 4 February 1999, address
the suggestions and recommendations of the concluding observations.