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NEW YORK, United States, Wednesday April 8, 2015, CMC - Chairman of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Reparations Commission (CRC), Sir Hilary Beckles, will address the three day historic Reparations Summit that gets underway here on Thursday.
Leaders of the national reparation commissions, committees and task forces from 11 CARICOM countries are attending the summit that is expected to result in the launch of the National African-American Reparations Commission (NAARC).
American civil rights leader, Reverend Jesse Jackson, and Mireille Fanon, chair of the UN Working Group of Experts on Peoples of African Descent and daughter of Frantz Fanon, the Black liberation theoretician from Martinique, are also expected to address the conference.
“The summit is a new beginning of the new phase of the global reparatory justice movement,” Sir Hilary told reporters prior to his departure.
He said he was concerned about the impact that native genocide and African enslavement continued to have on the region’s ability to develop its healthcare and education systems, cultural institutions and economies, “although slavery has been abolished over a century”.
Sir Hilary said it was therefore important to establish a framework through which people of African descent could have “a right to reparatory justice”.
“Our commission has confronted these matters and we are well on our way in establishing a path in which we can deal with this matter,” he said.
CARICOM countries have already endorsed a 10-point plan of action put forward by the CRC and Sir Hilary said he was pleased that the commissions were “coming together to lay the foundation for what we hope will be a global summit within the next year”.