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MHRMI / AMHRC - Press Release

MHRMI, AMHRC Welcome Upcoming United Nations Review on Greeces Human Rights Record

July 22, 2009



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Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination Macedonian Human Rights Movement International (MHRMI) / Australian Macedonian Human Rights Committee (AMHRC) - Press Release

Toronto, Canada and Melbourne, Australia - MHRMI and AMHRC welcome the upcoming United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (UN CERD) review on Greece's compliance (or non-compliance) with the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD). This will occur from August 10-11, 2009 in Geneva, Switzerland.

Greek Helsinki Monitor (GHM) and Minority Rights Group - Greece (MRG-G) will be presenting detailed reports on human rights abuses against Macedonians and other minorities in Greece. They have already submitted a joint report available at the Committee's website:
http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/cerd/docs/ngos/GHM_Greece75.doc.

As is the practice, they will also be presenting updated information including the acquittal of neo-Nazi author Costas Plevris and the failure to punish racist speech and attacks against Macedonians and other minorities, non-recognition and restrictions in the use of the Macedonian language, the illegal media ban and voting irregularities during Vinozhito's election campaign, and the ongoing blacklisting of Macedonian political refugees and human rights activists.

MHRMI and AMHRC call on Macedonians abroad to report to our organizations discrimination by border officials when trying to enter Greece, so that this information can be presented at the UN CERD review.

"This is a tremendous opportunity to demonstrate to the United Nations the hostile environment that Macedonians, Turkish and Roma minorities, as well as minority rights activists, face in Greece," said GHM Spokesperson Panayote Dimitras. "Considering UN Independent Expert on Minority Issues, Gay McDougall's call for Greece to finally recognize its Macedonian and Turkish minorities, and respect Roma rights, we hope and expect that the UN CERD will follow suit. We are also very pleased that the Committee has decided to take up the issue of absence of effective prosecution of hate speech against minorities and migrants and the existence of outright neo-Nazi groups, in blatant violation of ICERD."

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Macedonian Human Rights Movement International (MHRMI) has been active on human and national rights issues for Macedonians and other oppressed peoples since 1986. For more information, please visit www.mhrmi.org, or contact MHRMI at 416-850-7125, or info@mhrmi.org.

Founded in 1984, the Australian Macedonian Human Rights Committee (AMHRC) has been working towards achieving human rights for Macedonians and other oppressed minorities. For more information, please visit www.macedonianhr.org.au, or contact AMHRC at +61 3 9460 2910, or mail@macedonianhr.org.au.
 
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