Rassistische Gewalt verhindern

EU-Parlamentarier, Experten aus der Zivilgesellschaft und der Forschung haben im Rahmen einer Konferenz das Thema „Rassistische Gewalt Verhindern“ in London diskutiert.
Diese Konferenz wurde von der britischen EU-Ratspräsidentschaft unterstützt und hat großen Anklang gefunden. Der Schwerpunkt der Debatte lag auf der Frage der Prävention von Rassismus und mit welchen politischen Ansätzen und Mitteln rassistische Gewalt verhindert werden kann.

Dear ladies and gentlemen,

Let me start by thanking you for this invitation to address you here today on such an important issue of „Preventing Racist Violence“. The holding of this conference is an excellent example of how policy research institutions, Anti-Racism organisations and politicians can support this important process and should be an example to be followed up in other countries.

In the beginning of my speech, I would like to introduce myself and my political activities in the field.
I am a Member of the European Parliament and Vice-Chair of the Intergroup on Racism and Xenophobia, since 1999. I am German but Kurdish by origin. I believe that this is one reason among others why I am very committed to issues like multi-ethnic societies, tolerance and justice.

The Intergroup seeks to enhance the collaboration between Members of the European Parliament, political groups, and other stakeholders such as NGOs, trade unions and other European institutions on issues related to racism and equality.
The Intergroup represents an opportunity for us MEPs from different backgrounds to network within the Parliament in a more informal context, to enhance mutual support and build alliances between each other, and to bring more visibility to initiatives and actions on racism and equality issues. We believe in promoting respect for diversity, equal treatment regardless of ethnic origin and pursuing the best practice in integration policies. We intend to
– help give new political drive to the fight against racism;
– promote equal treatment, respect for diversity, and integration across the EU;
– influence the policy agenda to maintain Anti-Racism as a priority in Europe;
– serve as a platform where MEPs and NGOs can collaborate and actively contribute to Anti-Racism policy;
– Protect minority rights in the twenty five European member states.

I support the report by my colleague and Chair of the Intergroup, Claude Moraes, on the protection of minorities and Anti-Discrimination policies in an enlarged Europe.
Notwithstanding the important instrument adopted by the European Union in application of Article 13 of the EC Treaty, it is still a matter of fact that discrimination and violence on religious and ethnic grounds continue.

On the one hand, it is essential part of Anti-Racism policies across Europe to condemn all acts of intolerance and incitement to racial hatred and all acts of harassment or racist violence. The Council Framework Decision on combating racism and xenophobia will be an important step towards establishing a framework for punishing racist and xenophobic violence as a criminal offence across the EU.
Particularly, if we think about the victims of racist motivated violence and the violation of victims‘ humane dignity, punishment of racist violence is an essential part of the process of recovering from harm. Furthermore, perpetrators and potential perpetrators should be aware that their actions and attitudes stand against European societies‘ values.

On the other hand, if we discuss preventing racist violence, we have to adopt a differentiated approach, which includes the discussion on the causes of racist crime.
In my view, in the context of racism prevention, it is also very important to support North-South solidarity in Europe. A sophisticated and common understanding among societies for issues like uneven development, migration and cultural diversity needs to be pushed forward in Europe.

As a member of the Committee on Development of the European Parliament, I do stress the importance to establish strong links and partnerships with developing countries. And in the same time, I underline the relevance to foster the awareness among citizens and policy makers, that there is only ‚One World‘. This implies that ethnic minorities, refugees and immigrants in Europe deserve our all protection and support.

Recently for example, I wrote an opinion on behalf of the Committee on Development concerning the Council Directive on minimum standards on procedures in Member States for granting and withdrawing refugee status. This written opinion stresses the need of protection of vulnerable groups like unaccompanied minors, who are married. Under no circumstances, to be married does not mean, that a minor refugee deserve no rights of protection in Europe. In contrast, we politicians and citizens have to become aware that, for example, ‚marriage‘ in differnt societies and cultures is connected to different values and social and economic constraints.

Preventing Racist Violence implies for me, to look at the different sides of the problem and to support humanity, solidarity and justice through out societies.