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Fwd: Briefing Note 4, WCAR

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>Approved-By:  Laurie Wiseberg <lwiseberg.hchr@xxxxxxx>
>Date:         Fri, 6 Oct 2000 15:59:08 +0200
>Reply-To:     "NGO list for the purpose of the WCR." 
>Sender:       "NGO list for the purpose of the WCR." 
>From:         Laurie Wiseberg <lwiseberg.hchr@xxxxxxx>
>Subject:      Briefing Note 4, WCAR
>To:           OHCHR-NGO@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
>Briefing Note No. 4
> From the NGO Liaison, World Conference Against Racism
>26 September, 2000
>      These briefing notes are prepared to assist NGO representatives who
>wish to participate in the World Conference process. Feel free to circulate
>as widely as possible.
>      This note updates the previous three notes. Please pay particular
>attention to new meeting dates and deadlines. For further information or
>for clarifications, feel free to contact the NGO Liaison WCAR using the
>following coordinates:
>         Laurie S. Wiseberg, Room 4-025 OHCHR, Palais Wilson, Geneva
>Mailing address: OHCHR, Palais des Nations, CH 1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland
>                            Tel. (41-22) 917-9393
>                            Fax. (41-22) 917-9050
>                           lwiseberg.hchr@xxxxxxx
>If you want to be removed from this ListServ, send the following message to
>  <listserv@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>: SIGNOFF OHCHR-NGO. Put this in the text field
>                        and leave the subject blank.
>      I apologize to our French and Spanish speakers for the lack of
>translation of earlier material.  This time, I hope we can get French and
>Spanish versions. They will be sent automatically to all those who
>requested being put on the French or Spanish mailing lists as soon as the
>translations are available.
>         Je présente mes excuses auprès des francophones et des
>hispanophones pour le manque de traduction des documents antérieurs. A
>partir de maintenant, j' espère que nous aurons des documents en version
>française et espagnole. Ils seront automatiquement envoyés à tous ceux qui
>auront demandé  à être inscrits dans la liste d' adresses française ou
>espagnole dès que les traductions seront disponibles.
>      Pido disculpas a los de habla francesa y española por la falta de
>traducción de material anterior. Esta vez, espero que podamos obtener
>versiones en francés y español. Les serán enviadas automáticamente a todos
>aquellos que pidieron ser incluidos en listas de correo en francés o
>español una vez que las traducciones estén disponibles.
>I. Dates and Venue for the World Conference and NGO Forum.
>      The WCAR will take place in South Africa from 31 August to 7 September
>2001. The dates for the NGO Forum have now been set. The Forum will take
>place from 28 August-1 September 2001. There is still no decision on the
>venue (i.e., the city).
>II. Organizing Committee for the NGO Forum
>      The Organizing Committee for the NGO Forum is being led by the South
>African National NGO Coalition, SANGOCO. The Committee is currently setting
>up offices and hiring core staff. For the present, contact Mr. Moshe More
>at the following e-mail for further information: moshe@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
>III. Secretariat for the World Conference
>      The High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson is
>Secretary-General of the World Conference. A team at the Office of the High
>Commissioner (OHCHR) is doing the preparatory work for the Conference. It
>has recently been augmented by the appointment of an Executive Coordinator,
>Mr. Jyoti Shankar Singh.
>IV. How to find documentation for the Conference and the Preparatory
>      Relevant reports and documents for the World Conference are available
>on the website of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.
>                <http://www.unhchr.ch>
>Click on World Conference Against Racism at the top of the Home Page.
>      A great deal of additional information for NGOs has been posted on an
>NGO Website for the World Conference:
>                < http://www.hri.ca/racism>
>This has links to many other sites dealing with racism. NGOs wishing to
>post their documentation on this site should send an electronic version to
>the NGO Liaison, WCAR.
>V.  Slogan and Themes of the Conference
>      The First Session of the PrepCom adopted the following World
>Conference Slogan:
>            "United to combat racism: Equality, Justice, Dignity"
>      It also adopted the following 5 broad themes of the Provisional
>(1) Sources, causes, forms and contemporary manifestations of racism,
>racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance;
>(2) Victims of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related
>(3) Measures of prevention, education and protection aimed at the
>eradication of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related
>intolerance, at the national, regional and international levels;
>(4) Provision of effective remedies, recourse, redress, [compensatory] and
>other measures at the national, regional and international levels;
>(5) Strategies to achieve full and effective equality, including
>international cooperation and enhancement of the United Nations and other
>international mechanisms in combatting racism, racial discrimination,
>xenbophobia and related intolerance, and follow-up.
>Note that the word "compensatory" in theme 4 is in square brackets because
>there was no general agreement for including this term.
>VI.  Decisions of the First Session of the PrepCom regarding the structure
>of the conference
>      The First Session of the PrepCom elected Ambassador (Mme) Absa Claude
>Diallo of Senegal as its Chairperson. Ambassador Diallo chaired the
>sessional working group of the 55th Session of the Commission on Human
>Rights (1999) on the preparation of the World Conference.
>      Other members of the Bureau are the following: Tunisia, Islamic
>Republic of Iran, Malaysia, FYR of Macedonia, Georgia, Brazil, Mexico
>(Rapporteur), France, USA and South Africa as ex-officio.
>      In the Rules of Procedures adopted at the First Session of the
>PrepCom, it was decided that the Conference would establish one Main
>Committee and one Drafting Committee, and these Committees may set up their
>own subcommittees or working groups. NGOs will be permitted to participate
>in the work of both of these Committees (and any subcommittees or working
>groups they establish) on questions within the scope of their activities.
>      This means that NGOs will be able to make oral statements as well as
>to submit written statements to the Conference.
>      If written statements of NGOs are to be circulated at the
>Inter-sessional Working Group meeting or during the Second Session of the
>PrepCom, they must be submitted 10 weeks prior to the respective meeting.
>It helps if the statements are submitted electronically, and especially if
>text can be provided in English, French and Spanish. Length is restricted
>to 1,500 words, except that NGOs which have "general" consultative status
>may submitted up to 2,000 words.
>VII. Preparatory Process
>      The report of the first session of the Preparatory Committee (PrepCom)
>, which took place in Geneva from 1-5 May 2000, is available as
>A/CONF.189/PC.1/21 (in English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Russian and
>Chinese) on the website of the High Commissioner.  The second session of
>the PrepCom will take place in Geneva from 21 May - 1 June 2001.
>      In addition, there will be an Open-Ended Inter-Sessional Working Group
>Meeting in Geneva, 15-19 January 2001. The Inter-Sessional Working Group
>will have before it a document prepared by the Secretariat of the World
>Conference (i.e., a draft Declaration and Programme of Action).
>      There will also be an Informal Meeting,  to plan for the
>Inter-Sessional Working Group and to begin discussion on the sub-themes of
>the five major conference themes. (Originally scheduled for October 19-20,
>it is now likely that the meeting will be moved to the week of November
>      NGOs with Consultative Status with ECOSOC or which are accredited to
>the World Conference, can attend these meetings as observers.
>VIII. Regional Preparatory Meetings
>      There have been changes in the dates for some of the Regional
>Preparatory meetings since the last Briefing Note was prepared. The
>Regional Preparatory meetings and the associated NGO meetings will now take
>place as follows.
>         Regional Preparatory Meeting for Europe (in Strasbourg, France),
>organized by the Council of Europe, 11-13 October 2000.  On 10-11 October,
>   there will be a European NGO Forum. For further information about these
>   meetings, see the website of the European Commission against Racism and
>    Intolerance (ECRI):<http://www.ecri.coe.int/en/07/01/e07010001.htm>.
>Note that the rules of NGO participation at the European meetings have been
>determined by the Council of Europe, in consultation with NGOs, and they
>are not the same as those which will govern the other regional meetings.
>The rules, and why they were adopted, are explained on the ECRI website.
>The deadline for registering to participate in the NGO Forum was September
>      Regional Preparatory Meeting for Africa (in Dakar, Senegal). This
>meeting was initially scheduled for 2-4 November 2000. It is likely that
>the meeting now take place 22-24 January 2001. However, no decision has as
>yet been taken and these dates are still tentative. An African NGO Forum
>will be held one or two day prior to the meeting. For details about that
>NGO Forum, contact Mr. Alioune Tine at Rencontre africaine pour la défense
>des droits de l'homme (RADDHO) <raddho@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>.
>      Regional Preparatory Meeting for the Americas  (in Santiago, Chile),
>5-7  December 2000. An NGO Forum will be held 3-4 December, just prior to
>this meeting. For details, contact Ms. Inés Reichel, at the Instituto
>Inter-Americano de Derechos Humanos (IIDH) at <ireichel@xxxxxxxxxx> .
>      Regional Preparatory Meeting for Asia (in Teheran, Iran). This meeting
>will now take place 19-21 February 2001. An NGO Forum will be held 17-18
>February. For details, contact Ms. Nimalka Fernando at the International
>Movement Against All Forms of Discrimination and Racism (IMADR)
>IX.  NGO Participation in the Preparatory Process
>      NGOs wishing to participate in the preparatory meetings (whether in
>Geneva or in the regions) must either have Consultative Status with ECOSOC
>or be accredited to the World Conference. The procedure for getting
>accreditation to the WCAR is noted below. In response to frequently asked
>questions, please take note of the following:
>      (a) NGOs which have Consultative Status with ECOSOC, or which have
>been accredited to the WCAR,  may participate in the Regional  Preparatory
>meetings. For each meeting at which the organization will be represented,
>the NGO must send a separate letter on letterhead, signed by the person
>authorized to do so, stating which persons will be attending. This letter
>should be addressed to Catherine Bremont, OHCHR 1-051, Palais des Nations,
>CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland. It can be sent by fax to: (41-22) 917-9011.
>E-mail communications are not acceptable for this purpose.
>      (b) Any NGO which has been accredited to attend a Regional Meeting
>(i.e., a governmental, not an NGO meeting) is considered accredited to the
>entire process and may attend the World Conference or any other associated
>      (c) NGOs which wish to attend the Inter-Sessional Meeting, the Second
>Session of the Preparatory Meeting, or the World Conference itself ? if the
>NGO has Consultative Status or is accredited to the WCAR ? needs to send a
>letter (a separate one for each meeting), on letterhead, signed by the
>person authorized to do so, listing the names of the representatives who
>will be attending and asking that credentials be prepared for them. See (a)
>above for details on where to send this letter.
>      There are some funds available to assist NGO participation at these
>Regional Preparatory meetings and there will be some funds available to
>assist NGOs to go to South Africa. See XIII below for information on how to
>apply for financial assistance.
>X.  Regional Expert Seminars
>      A number of expert regional seminars have been organized in the
>context of the World Conference to spur consideration of important issues,
>culminate in effective suggestions to the second Preparatory Committee and
>the World Conference itself, commence a distillation of the issues and
>suggest practical strategies, and create a groundswell of governmental,
>institutional and public support for the World Conference and its
>objectives. The following seminars have already taken place:
>      Expert Seminar for Western Europe, Geneva, 6-8 December 1999 on:
>"Racism, Refugees & Multiethnic States."
>      Expert Seminar for Western Europe, Geneva, 16-18 February 2000 on:
>"Remedies Available to Victims of Acts of Racism, Racial Discrimination,
>Xenophobia and Related Intolerance and Good National Practices in this
>      Expert Seminar for Eastern Europe, 5-7 July 2000, Warsaw on:
>"Protection of Minorities and Other Vulnerable Groups and Strengthening
>Human Rights Capacity at the National Level".
>      Expert Seminar for Asia, 5-7 September 2000, Bangkok on: "Migrant
>Workers and Trafficking of Persons, with Particular Reference to Women and
>Two others regional expert seminars are scheduled as follows:
>      Expert Seminar for Africa,  4-6 October 2000, Addis Ababa on:
>"Preventing Ethnic and Racial Conflict" (Point Person: Aziz Ndiaye. Email:
>andiaye.hchr@xxxxxxxx Tel. 41-22 917-9826.)
>      Expert Seminar for Latin America,  25-27 October 2000, Santiago, on:
>"Economic, Social and Legal Measures to Combat Racial Discrimination, with
>Particular Reference to Vulnerable Groups". (Point Person: Sandra Aragon.
>Email:saragon.hchr@xxxxxxxx Tel. 41-22 917-9129.)
>NGOs wishing to participate in these regional expert seminars should note
>the following:
>      If your organization has consultative status with the United Nations
>Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) or has been accredited to the WCAR,
>your NGO  will receive an invitation to participate as an "observer".
>Observers may take part in the Seminar discussions and distribute
>      If your organization has neither ECOSOC consultative status nor
>accrediation to the WCAR, your representative(s) may attend the Seminar as
>a member of the public gallery.  Members of the public gallery do not
>participate in the Seminar discussions nor can they distribute
>      In order to ensure access to the Seminar, any NGO wishing to attend,
>must forward to our office by mail or facsimile (41-22) 917-9050 on
>official letterhead, the names of its designated representative(s) as soon
>as possible. Address the letter to the point person noted above. If you
>have questions concerning these seminars, also direct yourselves to these
>      Note that there are no funds available to assist NGOs which wish to
>participate in these regional seminars.
>XI. Other Regional NGO Meetings
>      The Secretariat of the OHCHR is also planning to support four regional
>NGO meetings intended to feed into the NGO Forum. (Details on how to apply
>for funding are noted in XIII below.) While the dates and venues have not
>yet been confirmed, the plans at present are for meetings:
>      For Eastern and Central Europe, in Warsaw: contact, Mr. Marek Nowicki,
>Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights, at <jacquel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>. Dates:
>14-18 November 2000.
>      For Africa, in Botswana: contact Ms. Chantal Kisoon at the Centre for
>Human Rights, University of Pretoria <ckisoon@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Tentatively
>set for 21-26 January 2001. These may change, depending on the dates
>selected for the African regional meeting.
>      For Asia, in Amman, Jordan: contact Arab Organization for Human Rights
>(AOHR), Mr. Nizam Assaf, <achrs@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx> or <aohr_jo@xxxxxxxxx>,
>probably in March 2001.
>      For the Americas, in Quito, Ecuador: contact Ms. Irene Leon at Agencia
>Latinoamerican de Informacion (ALAI) at <ddhh@xxxxxxxxxxx> or contact Mr.
>Mark Hecht at Human Rights Internet (HRI) at <hechtma@xxxxxx>. Probably in
>January 2001.
>XII.  Accreditation of NGOs
>      NGOs which have Consultative Status with ECOSOC may participate in the
>World Conference and its preparatory processes.
>      Representatives of Indigenous Peoples or Indigenous Peoples
>Organizations which have been accredited under Resolution 1995/32 to
>participate in the Working Group of the Commission on Human Rights on the
>draft declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples, may participate in
>the World Conference and its preparatory processes.
>      NGOs which have been accredited to any of the Regional Meetings for
>the World Conference (i.e., Strasbourg, Dakar, Santiago, Teheran) will be
>considered accredited to the World Conference and its preparatory
>      NGOs which do not have Consultative Status can be accredited to the
>World Conference under Resolution 1996/31, and Decision PC 1/5 of the First
>Session of the PrepCom as follows:
>      (a)  An NGO applies to the Conference Secretariat with required
>           documentation (see information note for NGOs not having
>           Consultative Status, on the website of the OHCHR and/or
>           questionnaire on the web).
>      (b)  This documentation is reviewed by the Secretariat to ensure that
>           it is complete and that the NGO meets the criteria for
>           accreditation.
>      (c)  When 10 applications have been received, the Secretariat sends a
>           note verbale to all governments with a list of the NGOs applying
>           and its recommendation. Governments have 14 days to raise any
>           concerns they have.
>      (d)  Where no concerns have been raised, the Secretariat will forward
>           the name of the applying NGOs to the Bureau of the PrepCom for
>           accreditation.
>      (e)  If concerns are raised about an NGO, the Secretariat will inform
>           the NGO about the government's comments and give the NGO the
>           opportunity to reply. It will then forward the government's
>           concerns, the NGOs comments and its own recommendation to the
>           Bureau for action. The Bureau, in consultation with the regions,
>           will decide whether or not to accredit the NGO.
>      (f)  If the Bureau decides not to accredit, the matter will go to the
>           Second Session of the PrepCom (in May 2000) for final decision.
>      As a general rule, to participate in the Regional preparatory
>meetings, NGOs must either be accredited to the World Conference, have
>Consultative Status with ECOSOC, or be an indigenous organization
>accredited under Resolution 1995/32. However, the different regional groups
>have established their own criteria for accrediting NGOs to their Regional
>      Thus, the Council of Europe has its own criteria (set out on the
>website of the European Commission < www.ecri.coe.int> ) for accrediting
>NGOs to the Strasbourg regional meeting.
>      The African Group has agreed to consider any NGO which has Observer
>Status with the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights as
>accredited to the Dakar regional meeting.
>      The Group of Latin American and Caribbean states will similarly be
>accrediting NGOs.
>      Once an NGO has been accredited to participate in a Regional
>Preparatory Meeting, it is automatically accredited to participate in the
>World Conference itself and any other preparatory meeting.
>      Since accreditation is a complicated/lengthy process please apply for
>accreditation as early as possible. A minimum of a 6 weeks is generally
>required by the Secretariat to process an application. You should send your
>applications to: Ms. Sandra Aragon, OHCHR, Palais des Nations, 1211 Geneva
>10, Switzerland. Tel. (41-22) 917-9129. Fax. (41-22) 917-9050. Email:
>XIII.  Funding NGO Participation in the World Conference Process
>      The Office of the High Commissioner has secured funding to subsidize
>the participation of NGOs in the Regional Preparatory meetings for Africa,
>Asia and the Americas (see VIII above) and in four NGO networking meetings
>(see XI above). The OHCHR also hopes to raise funds to assist NGOs in
>getting to the NGO Forum in South Africa and to the World Conference. This
>is unprecedented in the history of the UN's World Conferences, as NGOs have
>always had to raise their own funds for this purpose.
>      To ensure that these funds support a broad range of NGO input into the
>World Conference and its preparatory processes, and are distributed in a
>transparent and fair manner, the following procedure has been established.
>      While for each meeting, one NGO has been asked to take charge of the
>logistical arrangements, for each region in which meetings are being
>organized (Africa, Asia, Americas, Eastern and Central Europe) a steering
>committee of approximately 8-10 organizations has been established, with
>representation from geographic sub-regions and relevant social sectors
>(e.g., minorities, indigenous, women, youth). These regional steering
>committees are currently in the process of establishing criteria for
>selecting the NGOs to be subsidized in their region. As soon as these
>criteria are determined in the regions, they will be posted on the web and
>disseminated by this ListServe, together with the names of the
>organizations which comprise the steering committees.
>      NGOs wishing to be subsidized to attend a regional or networking
>meeting should fill out the application form below and send it to the
>relevant coordinating organization as noted in VIII and XI above.
>      The criteria for selecting NGOs to subsidize to attend the NGO Forum
>and World Conference will be established at a later date by SANGOCO (the
>NGO coordinating the NGO Forum) together with an international steering
>committee whose composition and rules of procedure still need to be
>      Questionnaire for NGOs which wish to request financial assistance
>                 to attend a regional or networking meeting
>                          (Draft 27 September 2000)
>      If you are applying for funding to attend more than one meeting,
>              fill out a separate application for each meeting.
>                     (This questionnaire may be amended.
>          If so, a new version will be sent out on the ListServe.)
>Provide the Following Information
>A.  Please indicate for which meeting you are seeking funding:
>      Regional Meeting Africa (Dakar, Senegal)
>      Regional Meeting Americas (Santiago, Chile)
>      Regional Meeting Asia (Teheran, Iran)
>      Networking Meeting Africa (Botswana)
>      Networking Meeting Americas (Quito, Ecuador)
>      Networking Meeting Asia (Amman, Jordan)
>      Networking Meeting Eastern and Central Europe (Warsaw, Poland)
>B. Basic Information about your organization
>      1. Name of Organization:
>      2. Full Address of the Organization:
>      3. Telephone Number (include country and city code):
>      4. Fax Number (include country and city code):
>      5. E-mail address:
>      6. Chief Executive Officer of the Organization:
>      7. Name of Person Making this Application (name and title/function):
>      8. Year your organization was established.
>      9. Does your organization have:
>           - consultative status with ECOSOC?
>           - status under ECOSOC Resolution 1995/32 as an indigenous
>                 organization?
>           - observer status with the African Commission on Human and
>                 Rights?
>           - consultative status with the Council of Europe?
>           Or, has your organization been accredited to the World
>           Conference?
>      10. What is the preferred working language of your organization ?
>English, French,
>            Spanish, Arabic, Russian or Chinese?
>Information Specific to the World Conference Process
>      11. If your organization represents a particular sector or community
>(e.g., an indigenous group, a minority, women, refugees, migrants, etc.)
>please indicate the nature of your community.
>      12. Does your organization belong to any networks and, if so, which
>      13. In two to three paragraphs (no more than half a page), please
>describe your organization's main areas of activity with respect to
>combatting racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related
>intolerance, and what role (if any) it has so far played in the World
>Conference process.
>      14. Please indicate in which countries or regions your organization
>      15. Please describe (in one or two paragraphs, no more than half a
>page) what type of contribution your organization will make to the meeting
>you are asking to attend and to the World Conference process.
>      16. Does your organization intend to go to the World Conference in
>South Africa? What efforts have you made (or do you plan to make) to raise
>funds for this purpose?
>      17. Does your organization intend to go to the NGO Forum in South
>What efforts have you made (or do you plan to make) to raise funds for this
>      18. Any additional comments (no more than half a page).
>XIV. How Individuals, Academics and Others Can Participate in the WCAR
>There are a number of ways that individuals can participate in the
>preparatory process for the World Conference.
>      First, an individual can observe the proceedings of  the second
>Preparatory Committee or the regional experts seminars simply by writing to
>us requesting permission to do so. For these meetings there is a public
>gallery where individuals can observe without accreditation. However, they
>cannot make written or oral statements.
>     For a deeper involvement in the World Conference process, there are
>other ways in which individuals can participate.  First, they can work
>with, or become affiliated to, an NGO -- a non-governmental organization
>(this could be an educational centre or association, a community based
>organization, a human rights group, etc.).  That NGO could apply to become
>accredited to the World Conference.  If the NGO is successfully accredited,
>then its representatives can take part in any of the meetings leading up to
>the World Conference, including the World Conference itself. In such a
>case, NGO representatives can present both written and oral statements to
>the Preparatory Committee and the World Conference, and participate fully
>in the proceedings.
>     Secondly, individuals can become active with a non-governmental
>organisation which has consultative status with ECOSOC, and which is
>thereby fully accredited to the World Conference, and participate in the
>conference proceeding as a representative of that NGO.
>     Third, there are some governments which permit individuals (often
>academics) to join the government delegation to world conferences. You
>would have to talk to your government were you interested in this route.
>     Fourth, there will be an NGO Forum in South Africa parallel to the
>World Conference. While there will be a registration process for the NGO
>Forum, it will not require the same formal accreditation that is needed for
>the World Conference process. There will be many activities offering
>opportunities for individuals to give papers, lead discussions, hold
>workshops, etc.
>     Finally, there are many activities that can be done at the national and
>regional level, including organizing satellite meetings, that can have an
>impact on the World Conference, including the Declaration and Plan of
>Action which will emerge, which do not require any formal accreditation to
>the World Conference process.
>XV.  Youth Participation
>     There is likely to be a youth component to the NGO Forum and World
>Conference. However, at this point, there are no definite plans in place.
>We will keep you posted as developments unfold.