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United Nations denounces violence in Nigeria, Francis Deng visits West Africa and urges Nigerian government to protect its citizens
1. United Nations Expert on Genocide Prevention Travels to West Africa
16 March 2010
UN News Centre
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Special Adviser on the prevention of genocide is travelling to West Africa to identify how national and sub-regional bodies can help prevent the scourge.
(…) He will stop in Guinea, Nigeria and Ghana, where he will discuss his mandate with government officials, UN officials on the ground and representatives from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Mr. Deng, a Sudanese scholar and advocate, was named to the post by Mr. Ban in 2007 to collect information on serious violations of human rights that could lead to genocide and to bring potential genocidal situations to the attention of the Security Council. After holding a range of positions in both the UN and the Sudanese Government, he served as the Secretary-General’s Special Representative on Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from 1992-2004. (…)
Read full UN news brief here

19 March 2010 UN release: Managing diversity a challenge for all countries, says UN genocide prevention official

2. The United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination encourages Nigerian government to protect its citizens

12 March 2010
UN News Centre
(…) The United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination is calling on Nigerian authorities to tackle the underlying causes of repeated outbreaks of deadly ethnic and religious violence near the northern city of Jos.
“Ethnic hatred must not be allowed to foment in Nigeria,” said human rights expert Anwar Kemal, in his capacity as Chairperson of the Committee, which just concluded its 76th session in Geneva. He urged the Government of Nigeria “to take all the appropriate measures to immediately stop the ethnic violence, to protect the victims, and to avoid the repetition of such killings in the future.”
(…) The Committee also called on the authorities “to firmly address all underlying causes of tension leading to this repeated violence” and to promote dialogue between different ethnic communities to achieve tolerance and peace. The expert group drew attention to the fact that Nigeria has ratified the International Convention on the Elimination of Alls Forms of Racial Discrimination, and is obligated to prevent and protect persons against acts of hatred, incitement to racial and ethnic violence or any form of violence based on ethnicity. (…)
Read full news brief here

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