Message from The CARICOM Reparations Commission

International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade

25 March 2024

The CARICOM Reparations Commission (CRC)

The CARICOM Reparations Commission (CRC) takes the opportunity of the observance of the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade to renew its call for reparatory justice for the victims and their descendants.

People of African Descent continue to endure intersecting forms of discrimination, structures of inequality, racism and underdevelopment, born out of their historical of experience of over four centuries of kidnapping and trafficking through the trans-Atlantic trade in enslaved Africans, chattel enslavement, historical and contemporary colonialism. The enduring impact is manifest in continued disparity in access to education, health and employment, intergenerational poverty, and the denial of the full enjoyment of their human rights.

The CRC recognises that the current political, economic and humanitarian crisis in Haiti has its roots in historical legacies; this beacon of resistance to African enslavement having been made to pay insurmountable and fiscally devastating indemnities to France for its own liberation. Reparations are due to Haiti as part of a comprehensive solution to address the development aspirations of the people of Haiti and restore peace and stability.

The CRC calls on the relevant European nations to offer full, unreserved and unconditional apologies, accept responsibility for their role in perpetrating crimes against humanity of native genocide and chattel enslavement in the Caribbean and to repair the lasting consequences of early European expansion and growth.

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