Reparations Conversations at UN Draw Scrutiny, Countries Remain Silent

In Summary

At the latest United Nations General Assembly, the topic of reparations drew scrutiny when conversations around the global issue had some major powers staying silent. 

At the latest United Nations General Assembly, the topic of reparations drew scrutiny when conversations around the global issue had some major powers staying silent. 

In a report in the Associated Press, African and Caribbean countries that stand to benefit from reparations were backed by other nations. However, those that were more responsible for slavery, as well as colonialism, said very little about what they might owe to African descendants. 

“Those missing from the renewed global conversation on the topic, though, were noteworthy as well: the United States, Britain, and Germany, wealthy and developed nations built from conquests of varying kinds,” the report read. 

The latest discussions on reparations came as the U.N. commemorated an important but contentious 2001 anti-racism conference in South Africa which resulted in what is known as the Durban Declaration.  

The Durban Declaration is considered the U.N.’s attempt to double efforts in the fight against discrimination worldwide.  

“Millions of the descendants of Africans who were sold into slavery remain trapped in lives of underdevelopment, disadvantage, discrimination, and poverty,” South African President Cyril Ramaphosa told the gathering via a video call, according to the AP. 

The recent assembly casts light on how global communities offer silence about reparations to those African decedents impacted by slavery. President Joe Biden did not make mention to it in his address the prior week, the AP reports.  

While administration officials will not comment, the White House has said previously it supported studying reparations. 

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