World Conference on African and African Descendents issues


World Conference on African and African Descendents issues, Racism and Racial discrimination
11-12 November 2004, Vienna, Austria

AAPSO's Message to the Conference

The  United Nations World Conference  Against Racism held in Durban, South Africa, in 2001 took a very significant step towards the situation of Africans and peoples of African descendents and in the diaspora. Most importantly, it adopted a number of provisions enshrined in  the "Durban Declaration and Programme of Action" which are expected to give more impetus to the efforts of international community to tackle these issues.

Africans and peoples of African descendents are in many occasions the object of racial discrimination, marginalization, rejection, hatred and even violence or death. Nonetheless,  it is  overwhelmingly known that Africans and African diaspora significantly contribute to the socio-economic developement of the countries where they live, although in some occasions, they are regarded as generating unemployment, diseases and other forms of social ills. AAPSO  would like to stress that African descents and African diaspora have their culture and traditions to be safeguarded, which presents an opportunity for cultural exchanges and cultural mutual benefits, factor of peace and understanding.

Nonetheless, while being sidelined within the society in general, African descents as people of nation, or members of communities, along with the other peoples in developing countries, remain in many circumstances at the mercy of the disastrous negative effects of globalization,  eliminating the all out reduced margin of manoeuver to survive. The African descents as people of a nation continue enduring the legacy of slave trade and colonialism, characterised by backwardness, underdevelopment, misery and generalized poverty.

The lacking of appropriate legal measures to protect African diaspora from abuses and discrimination remains a fertile ground  to  human rights violations, to non-respect of human dignity. Such a situation would trigger hostility, unrest, insecurity and destabilisation.

AAPSO wishes to indicate the following as main priorities for the future:

a) Identification of concrete demands, measures and project proposals enclosed in the "Durban Declaration and Programme of Action."
b) Outlining of long-term strategy keeping in mind the legal rights enjoyed by African descents and African diaspora;
c) Monitoring of action undertaken;
d) Setting up of ( regional) representation of African diaspora by establishing active relationship by means of networking their activities and ability to strenghtening and reinforcing their very existence.

Sustain solidarity between African descents as people of a nation or communities and diaspora, should be established.

AAPSO stresses the necessity of undertaking the above action and urges governments and international community all over the world to give them the opportunity to take fully part in the development of the countries wherever they live; to provide them the fundamentals of human rights;  to focus more on the issues. It is most encouraging that the African Union has manifested growing interest in the issue of Africans and African descendents and in the diaspora.

Resolving these issues is a factor of peace, stability and progress to  the world.