United Nations


International Convention on the Elimination of A ll Forms of Racial Discrimination

Distr.: General

10 August 2022

Original: English

Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

107th session

Summary record of the first part (public)* of the 2892nd meeting

Held at the Palais Wilson, Geneva, on Monday, 8 August 2022, at 10 a.m.

Chair:Ms. Shepherd


Opening of the session

Adoption of the agenda

The meeting was called to order at 10 a.m.

Opening of the session

1.The Chair declared open the 107th session of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.

2.Ms. Lee (Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights) said that the flexibility and engagement of treaty body members had led to the agreement by the Chairs of the human rights treaty bodies at their 34th meeting to establish a predictable schedule of country reviews, with an eight-year cycle for full reviews and follow-up reviews to take place in the interim period. Similar progress was needed to harmonize working methods, minimize overlaps and ensure cost-effectiveness in the human rights treaty body system, including through the use of new digital tools.

3.The conclusions reached by the Chairs of the treaty bodies incorporated and expanded on certain initiatives that had been launched by the Committee, including the simplified reporting procedure, and represented a new stage in the strengthening of the treaty body system to address the challenges of underreporting or delays in the submission of reports on the part of States parties. It would require the treaty bodies to harmonize their working methods in order to effectively coordinate and reduce overlaps. It should be noted, however, that the implementation of the eight-year predictable review schedule outlined in the conclusions would be subject to the availability of human and financial resources.

4.The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic continued to affect populations across the globe, including in terms of obstacles to the realization of the right to education. As noted by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in her report on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the realization of the equal enjoyment of the right to education by every girl, the challenges faced in that regard by children belonging to minority groups, children of African descent and indigenous children were exacerbated by historical and structural discrimination, alongside the lack of multilingual and intercultural education in distance learning.

5.Little progress had been made in access to COVID-19 vaccines for developing countries, and she noted the statement adopted by the Committee at its 106th session, which had invited States to ensure effective and non-discriminatory access to COVID-19 vaccines and treatments taking into account the situation and needs of marginalized groups, including through a comprehensive temporary waiver of the provisions of the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights. The Committee’s initiative to develop a general recommendation on racial discrimination and the right to health was timely and would add to the understanding of the human rights standards needed to implement the right to health in accordance with the principles of non-discrimination and equality, including during pandemics.

6.The situation of migrants at international borders remained a cause of concern, which the Committee had addressed through its reviews of States parties’ reports and under its early warning and urgent action procedures. The recent report by the Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, entitled “Human rights violations at international borders: trends, prevention and accountability”, which had been presented to the Human Rights Council at its fiftieth session, had raised concerns about the human rights implications of measures taken by States to regulate border and immigration governance. Those measures included pushbacks, refoulement, collective expulsions, restrictions on asylum procedures and the criminalization of irregular immigration, which could have a racially discriminatory impact and could increase the vulnerability of persons crossing international borders.

7.The Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent, at its thirtieth session, had explored the human rights situation of children of African descent and had held extensive discussions on the racial discrimination and inequalities faced by children of African descent in all areas of life, including the administration of justice, education, health and redress for legacies of enslavement, colonialism and racial segregation. The annual report of the Working Group would be available in the coming months and would no doubt prove useful to the work of the Committee.

Adoption of the agenda ( CERD/C/107/1 )

8.The agenda was adopted.

The public part of the meeting rose at 10.15 a.m.