The European Parliament overwhelmingly approved a resolution Tuesday addressing “structural racism” in Europe against Europeans of African descent. The resolution calls for “reparations for crimes against humanity during European colonialism.”
The document was written by the British Labour MEP Claude Moraes and was inspired by the racist behavior allegedly experienced by Italian socialist MEP Cécile Kyenge, who served as Italy’s first black government minister, according to The Guardian. The resolution was approved with 535 in favor, and 80 against with 44 abstentions.
The resolution urges member states of the EU to form and execute anti-racism strategies within their home nations, specifically focusing on “the fields of education, housing, health, criminal justice, political participation and migration,” according to the European Parliament website. It also seeks to address “racial profiling in criminal law and counter-terrorism.”
The resolution also clearly endorses action regarding reparations made to Afro-Europeans for “crimes against humanity during European colonialism.
The European Parliament’s press release about the resolution reads, “Additionally, people of African descent should be taken into account more in current funding programmes and in the next multiannual financial framework (2021-2027).”
The resolution encourages EU institutions and member states to address and rectify past injustices and crimes against humanity, perpetrated in the name of European colonialism. These historic crimes still have present day negative consequences for people of African descent, MEPs claim.
MEPs suggest carrying out reparations, such as apologising publicly and return stolen artefacts to their countries of origin.”
The European Parliament also calls for nations to declassify their colonial archives and to provide a “comprehensive perspective on colonialism and slavery” in academic curricula.