COMMITTEE ON THE ELIMINATION OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION

Inter-state communications

Interstate communications Qatar v. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Qatar v. United Arab Emirates

On 8 March 2018, for the first time in history, the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (the Committee) received two interstate communications submitted by Qatar respectively against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates under article 11 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (the Convention).

In compliance with article 11(1) of the Convention, the Committee transmitted the interstate communications received to the States parties concerned. In accordance with article 11(2) of the Convention, the State of Qatar has referred the matter again to the Committee on 29 October 2018 for both communications it submitted to the Committee.

On 14 December 2019, the Committee adopted a decision asking the concerned States to supply any relevant information on issues of jurisdiction of the Committee or admissibility of the communication, including the exhaustion of all available domestic remedies. 

On 27 August 2019, the Committee decided that it has jurisdiction concerning the communications submitted by Qatar respectively against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. 

On the same date, the Committee declared admissible the two communications and requested its Chair to appoint, in accordance with article 12(1) of the Convention the members of ad hoc Conciliation Commissions which shall make their good offices available to the States concerned with a view of an amicable solution of the matter. 

In February 2020, following consultations with the States parties concerned, the Chair of the Committee appointed the members of the ad hoc Commissions as follows:

  • Members of ad hoc Conciliation Commission on the case Qatar v. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia : Mr. Marc BOSSUYT (Belgium), Ms. Chinsung CHUNG (Republic of Korea), Mr. Makane Moïse MBENGUE (Senegal)1, Ms. Monica PINTO (Argentina) and Ms. Verene Albertha SHEPHERD (Jamaica).
  • Members of ad hoc Conciliation Commission on the case Qatar v. United Arab Emirates : Ms. Sarah CLEVELAND (USA), Ms. Chiara GIORGETTI (Italy), Ms. Maya SAHLI-FADEL (Algeria), Mr. Bernardo SEPÚLVEDA-AMOR (Mexico) and Bernard Yeung Kam John Yeung SIK YUEN (Mauritius).

On 11 January 2021, following the Al Ula Agreement concluded on 5 January 2021 between Qatar and its neighbours, including the respondents, Qatar transmitted two Notes verbales to the Secretariat requesting the suspension of the proceedings. Both respondents, the United Arab Emirates and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia consented to the suspension of the proceedings respectively on 27 January 2021 and 2 February 2021. 

On 5 March 2021, the two ad hoc Conciliation Commissions held a joint online meeting and decided to take note of Qatar’s request for suspension, to take also note of the respondents- consent to the suspension of the proceedings, to suspend the proceedings and to invite any of the States parties concerned to inform the ad hoc Conciliation Commission via the Secretariat within one year of the adoption of the Al Ula Declaration whether it wishes to resume the consideration of the matter before the ad hoc Conciliation Commissions or to provide any relevant information; and to remain seized of the matter.

The Committee hereby publishes the decision it has adopted in the course of the procedure concerning the communications submitted by Qatar and the decisions adopted by the ad hoc Conciliation Commissions concerning the suspension of the proceedings. 

Decisions concerning the cases Qatar v. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Qatar v. United Arab Emirates

Interstate communication State of Palestine v. Israel 

On 23 April 2018, the State of Palestine submitted an interstate communication to the Committee against Israel under article 11 of the Convention. 

On 7 November 2018, pursuant to article 11(2) of the Convention, the State of Palestine has referred the matter again to the Committee with respect to the interstate communication submitted against Israel. On 14 December 2018, during its 97th session (26 November to 14 December 2018), the Committee requested the States parties to supply any relevant information on issues of jurisdiction of the Committee or admissibility of the communication, including the exhaustion of all available domestic remedies. The Committee also decided to examine all preliminary questions related to interstate communications at its 98th session (23 April to 10 May 2019), with the participation, without voting rights, of one representative of the concerned States, in compliance with article 11(5) of the Convention.

On 10 May 2019, the Committee decided to postpone the consideration of the matter during the 99th session. Due to several procedural issues, the proceedings have been delayed again for the next session. On 12 December 2019, during its 100th session, the Committee decided that it had jurisdiction concerning the communication and decided to address the issue of jurisdiction at its next session. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent effect on the Committee’s sessions in 2020, the matter is due to be considered by the Committee during its 103rd session (19 to 30 April 2021). 

In February 2020, the Committee decided that the background documents regarding the communication Palestine v. Israel should be made public. 

The Committee hereby publishes the documents of the proceedings and the decision it has adopted concerning the case Palestine v. Israel:
Documents concerning the case State of Palestine v. Israel


[1] Ms. Mbengue replaces Mr Fatsah Ouguergouz (Algeria), who resigned in March 2020 for personal reasons.

Civil Society Consultation

 Joining hands to end racial discriminatiom, CERD Consultation with Civil Society 

Country-specific information