Concerning Mr. M.J. vs Denmark for violation of articles 4 and 6 of CERD.
In the year 2014, the Documentation and Advisory Centre on Racial Discrimination (DACoRD) filed a complaint on behalf of the author against Dan Park and others. The complaint was regarding an exhibition of the controversial Swedish artist held on October 23, 2014, at Christiansburg Palace under the auspices of the Danish People’s Party. In addition, the pictures were also exhibited at the Press Society Company.
In the works presented at the exhibition, Dan Park, who has already been convicted several times for racism in Sweden, depicts black people, and specially Mr. M.J. in a degrading, indignifying, inferiorizing manner.
In the complaint, DACoRD recalled that the right to freedom of expression is not unlimited, but may be subject to certain restriction, such as with respect to racist hate speech in whatever form that rejects the core human rights principles of human dignity and equality and seeks to degrade the standing of individuals and groups in the estimation of society.
Despite the Committee’s concern, on January 25, 2017, the investigation against Dan Park and others was stopped by the Danish prosecutor. An appeal was filed against the prosecutor’s decision but was denied on March 26, 2017, hence preluding M.J. from obtaining justice for racial discrimination before the Danish Courts. Having exhausted all national remedies, a complaint was sent to CERD.
The CERD is of the view that the facts before it disclose a violation of article 4 (a), read in conjunction with article 6, of the Convention.
According to the rules of the responsibility of States under international law, any violation of an international obligation that has resulted in harm entails a duty to make full reparation for the injury caused. The Committee emphasizes that it is the responsibility of the State party to make reparation for the violation of its obligations under the Convention and of the rights of the author of the communication, which should include an apology and granting him a full reparation.
CERD’s decision remains unimplemented as of November 2023
2. February 2024