Qatar, which chairs the United Nations (UN) Asia-Pacific Group for March, stressed the group's efforts to find ways to promote values of tolerance, accept differences among people and promote a culture of respect for diversity within the societies of the group's countries and other countries of the world.
This came during the speech of Qatar’s Permanent Representative to the UN, HE ambassador Sheikha Alya Ahmed bin Saif al-Thani, to the UN General Assembly on behalf of the Asia-Pacific Group on the occasion of International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
On behalf of the Asia-Pacific Group, Sheikha Alya expressed concern at the growing hatred, ethnic intolerance and negative stereotypes based on religion, language, culture or ethnic diversity.
The ambassador appealed to the international community to take concrete action and to be accompanied by a strong political will to mobilise all efforts at the national, regional and international levels to address all forms and manifestations of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance through cooperation, partnership, and integration.
She explained that education and awareness about different cultures and religions would play a crucial role in promoting the values of tolerance, acceptance, and respect for diversity.
She stressed the need to focus heavily on correcting misunderstandings and combating negative stereotypes as well as promoting harmony and tolerance for cultural, ethnic and religious diversity.
Sheikha Alya also noted the importance of acceding to the 2001 International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and the full and effective implementation of the provisions of the treaty.
In this context, Sheikha Alya referred to the outcome of the 2001 World Conference Against Racism, affirming that The Durban Declaration and Programme of Action is the solid foundation for combating all scourges of racism and providing appropriate means of redressing victims of racial discrimination.
She stressed on behalf of the Asia-Pacific Group, for its unwavering commitment and strong determination to emphasise the struggle and fight for the elimination of racial discrimination as a top priority for the countries of the group and other world powers.
Qatar chairs meeting: Qatar, in partnership with Italy, has chaired the first meeting of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) members.
Sheikha Alya stressed in her speech that Qatar took steps regionally and internationally to enhance Responsibility to Protect.
She highlighted the workshop Doha held in partnership with the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect and the GCC on responding to mass atrocities. The ambassador also pointed to Qatar's hosting of the 7th meeting of the National R2P Focal Points, which took place in April 2017.
Friday's meeting, which was hosted by the EU delegation to the UN, reviewed the steps taken by the group to promote the concept regionally and internationally.