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Thousands mark UN anti-racism day worldwide

People take part in an anti-racist protest rally in Athens, Greece, on March 21, 2015. © AFP

Large crowds of people across the world have taken part in a series of rallies to condemn what they see as rising racism and fascism in the United States and the Western states.

On Saturday, tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets in the capitals worldwide to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and voice their outrage at the growing wave of racism and fascism in the Western societies.

In Germany, a protest rally was held against PEGIDA, an anti-Islam movement, with the demonstrators also censuring the marginalization of immigrants in the country.

Greeks also staged an anti-racism march in Athens, protesting against the activities of Golden Dawn, a far-right neo-Nazi political party, as well as police brutality against the African-American community in the United States.

In Ferguson in the US state of Missouri, protesters urged an end to racial profiling and brutality by police forces.

Similar demonstrations were also held in Scotland, Ireland, England and France.

British demonstrators mark the UN anti-racism day in London on 21 March 2015. 

 

Many rights organizations have warned of a recent escalation of hatred, racism and Islamophobia in the US and Europe. They say people are fed up with media silence over the killings of Muslims and Blacks.

Some rival demonstrations were also held by far-right groups in some European cities calling for the expulsion of immigrants.

The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination was first designated and established by the UN in 1960, in response to the murder of 69 anti-apartheid demonstrators in South Africa. The United Nations General Assembly later proclaimed the day in 1966 and urged the global community to do its utmost to uproot all forms of racial discrimination.

Anti-war marches in the US

Demonstrators protesting US military involvement overseas carry signs amid mock coffins outside the White House on March 21, 2015.

 

Meanwhile, anti-war activists held separate rallies in several US cities to protest against the administration’s policies in the Middle East.

In Washington DC, protesters marked the anniversary of the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

The demonstrators were wearing orange jumpsuits to denounce America’s notorious Guantanamo Bay detention center.

They also slammed CIA-run drone campaigns targeting civilians in several Muslim countries, including Pakistan and Afghanistan.

A similar protest was also held in Los Angeles, where demonstrators slammed Washington’s meddling in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan. The participants chanted anti-war slogans, carrying coffins and banners as they marched through the streets.

JR/MKA/HMV

 

 


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