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Media advisories Special Procedures

UN experts on people of African descent to visit Colombia

10 May 2024

GENEVA (10 May 2024) – The UN Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent will conduct a country visit to Colombia from 15 to 24 May 2024.

The experts will gather information on any forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia, and related intolerance, to assess the overall human rights situation of Africans and people of African descent in Colombia.

The Working Group delegation, which is visiting the country at the invitation of the Government, will travel to Bogota, Tumaco, Cali, Buenaventura, North Cauca and Quibdò, and meet representatives of the Government, national institutions, the Judiciary, people of African descent, civil society organisations and individuals working on issues of racism and racial discrimination.

The delegation is composed of Catherine Namakula and Bina D’Costa, members of the Working Group. The Working Group will present a report on its visit to the Human Rights Council in September 2025.

The experts will also promote the International Decade for People of African Descent (2015-2024), which aims to highlight the contribution of people of African descent and strengthen national, regional and international cooperation to ensure that the human rights of people of African descent around the world are protected.

The experts will hold a press conference to share their preliminary observations at 11:00am (Bogota time) on Friday, 24 May at Sede, Oficina UNO DDHH, Calle 113 #7.45 Tower B. Bogota. Access will be strictly limited to journalists. Registrations by email to: [email protected]

The experts: The Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent was established on 25 April 2002 by the then Commission on Human Rights, following the World Conference against Racism held in Durban in 2001. It is composed of five independent experts: Ms. Barbara G. Reynolds current Chair-Rapporteur; Ms. Bina D’Costa; Ms. Dominique Day; Ms. Catherine S. Namakula and Ms. Miriam Ekiudoko.

The Working Group is part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the United Nations Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the United Nations Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council's independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms. Special Procedures mandate-holders are independent human rights experts appointed by the Human Rights Council to address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. They are not UN staff and are independent from any government or organization. They serve in their individual capacity and do not receive a salary for their work.

UN Human Rights, country page: Colombia

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