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The International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination - A Commentary by Thornberry, Patrick (14th July 2016)

6 Article 1: Definition of Racial Discrimination

From: The International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination: A Commentary

Patrick Thornberry

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2015. All Rights Reserved.date: 24 June 2019

Subject(s):
Religion — Ethnicity — Minorities — Race — Human rights remedies

This chapter focuses on the definition of racial discrimination in paragraph 1 of Article 1. ‘Discrimination’ is a term that may be used in positive, neutral, or negative senses. The definition of discrimination in ICERD and elsewhere in international human rights is essentially negative: unjust or unfair discrimination against a persons or group/category of persons. The injustice or detriment associated with discrimination is calibrated in terms of ‘nullifying or impairing’ the recognition, etc., ‘on an equal footing’ of human rights. In order to find discrimination that affects individuals or groups under Article 1, it needs to be established that individuals or groups are subject to distinctions, etc. ‘based on’ race, colour, etc.

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