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State of alarm 'multiplies' police impunity for racist abuses, says SOS Racisme

NGO received 12 complaints since March 16, of which 7 are related to security forces

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21 April 2020 06:59 PM

by

ACN|Barcelona

According to NGO SOS Racisme, the state of alarm has "multiplied" police impunity for racist abuses.

SOS Racisme has received 12 complaints since March 16, the day after the state of alarm was put in place to deal with the coronavirus public health crisis, and reports that 7 of these are related to abuses committed by security forces.

"If during so-called 'normal' periods these incidents are underreported, during a state of alarm this underreporting is multiplied because there are no witnesses beyond a few videos filmed from afar and with little context," laments Karlos Castilla of SOS Racisme.

As for reported racist incidents in 2019, the non-profit registered a total of 188 cases and ended up filing reports for 128 of them, while in 2018 there were 151 cases registered and 72 reports filed.

SOS Racisme attributes the underreporting to a number of reasons, including mistrust in the system or social vulnerability, among others, and claims this ends up "making racism invisible" on many occasions. 

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  • Karlos Castilla and Alba Cuevas presenting SOS Racisme's 2018 report in March 2019 (by Elisenda Rosanas)

  • Karlos Castilla and Alba Cuevas presenting SOS Racisme's 2018 report in March 2019 (by Elisenda Rosanas)

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