COMMITTEE ON THE ELIMINATION RACIAL DISCRIMINATION
30 July – 17 August 2001
429. In light of the failure of the State party to submit its initial
through thirteenth periodic reports, the Committee considered the situation
in the Republic of Liberia under its review procedures. Additionally,
in its decision 3 (49)*, the Committee decided to remain seized with the
situation in Liberia under its early warning and urgent action procedures.
430. The Committee regrets that the State party has failed to submit a
single report in accordance with article 9 of the Convention since it
ratified the Convention in 1976.
431. The Committee also regrets that after numerous invitations and inquiries,
the State party failed to send a representative to engage in a dialogue
with the Committee.
and difficulties impeding the implementation of the Convention
432. The State party is still slowly emerging from over seven years of
civil war which had immense human costs and was destructive of governmental
and social institutions.
433. The Committee is concerned that national legislation does not contain
explicit provisions prohibiting discrimination on the grounds of race
or ethnic or national origin, in conformity with the requirements of the
434. The Committee recommends that the Republic of Liberia take all appropriate
legislative measures to ensure that the provisions of the Convention are
fully reflected in domestic law. The Committee emphasizes the importance
of adequately prohibiting and penalizing acts of racial segregation and
discrimination whether they are committed by individuals or associations.
435. The Committee also recommends that the Republic of Liberia adopt
effective measures, pursuant to the provisions of the Convention, guaranteeing
equal enjoyment of the rights enumerated in those provisions to all ethnic
groups within the Republic of Liberia.
436. The Committee expresses grave concern about the numerous reported
instances of discrimination in the Republic of Liberia based on ethnicity.
The Committee is especially concerned by reports of extrajudicial killings,
allegations of torture and rape, and the lack of accountability of perpetrators,
including government security forces, for these abuses.
437. The Committee expresses its concerns about the vulnerable situation
of the large number of refugees who have fled the Republic of Liberia
for neighbouring countries, and that little seems to have been put into
place to ensure their repatriation and reintegration. In addition, the
reports of discrimination against Sierra Leonean refugees are disturbing.
438. With respect to article 7 of the Convention, the Committee notes
that very little information is available on measures, particularly in
the fields of teaching, education, culture and information, with a view
to combating prejudices which lead to racial discrimination.
439. The Committee urges the Republic of Liberia to take immediate and
effective measures aimed at bringing to justice the perpetrators of human
rights abuses during the civil war which targeted members of certain ethnic
440. The State party should also guarantee swift and thoroughgoing investigation
and prosecution of acts of violence against persons belonging to ethnic
and racial groups.
441. With regard to article 6 of the Convention, the Committee recommends
that the Republic of Liberia facilitate access to and ensure the effectiveness
of courts and administrative bodies in enforcing the rights of racial
and ethnic groups to be free from discrimination.
442. The Committee requests that the Republic of Liberia give wide publicity
to the Convention and to the Committee's observations.
443. The Committee considers the situation in Liberia to be extremely
grave with respect to the implementation of the Convention. The Committee
decides to send a letter to the State party conveying its deep concern
and expressing its willingness to send one or more of its members to visit
Liberia with a view to initiating a dialogue with the State party and
assisting it in fulfilling its obligations under the Convention.
* Ibid., Fifty-first Session, Supplement No. 18 (A/51/18), chap.
II, sect. B.