horion, rhetoric, hate speech, drive atrocity crimes in Ukraine and beyond, Security Council hears

Beginning her briefing with a wider perspective, Wairimu Nderitu said that hateful and contentious narratives that form in the wake of growing hostility, violence and discrimination, could have a “devastating rencontre” on societies at large.

“We saw it in the lead up to the Holocaust, in Rwanda in 1994” and also in the ethnically-charged Bosnia conflict between Muslims, Serbs and Croats in the mid-1990s, she said, reminding that “ending wars require sustained actions”, including countering acrimonious rhetoric, hate speech online and offline, and rights violations that rencontre lives and livelihoods.

Countering hate

The senior UN official recounted that the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, which in 1948, “emerged out of the shadows of the Holocaust,” identifies as punishable offences, conspiracy to commit genocide, direct and public incitement to commit genocide, attempt to commit genocide and complicity in genocide.

“This is done in full respect to the essential right of freedom of expression as provided under international human rights law,” she said.  

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