Ukraine war clearly manifests racism

April 2, 2022 - 21:13

TEHRAN - In parts of his remarks on the first day of Norouz (the Persian New Year), Leader of the Islamic Revolution pointed to examples of racism in the Ukraine war, saying, “In the issue of Ukraine all noticed Western racism.”

The Leader said while people were fleeing the war, they stopped the refugees to separate the black people from the whites.

Reportedly, there have been widespread reports from African students fleeing the country that they faced segregation, racism and abuse.

The Leader also said Western officials clearly regret in their media outlets that this time the war is not in the Middle East and it is in Europe.

“It means that if war and bloodshed and fratricide is in the Middle East, as they call it, it is not problematic, but if it is in Europe, it is problematic. This is utter racism,” the Leader pointed out.

The insultation against the people of color in Ukraine reverberated across the world.

For example, CBS News senior foreign correspondent Charlie D’Agata said the war in Ukraine is particularly shocking because the country is “relatively civilized” and “European” compared to Iraq and Afghanistan.

D’Agata’s characterization was among a flurry of similar commentary in the media that critics have slammed as racist and, in some cases, historically inaccurate, according to Yahoo News.

While reporting from Kyiv a day after Russia began its invasion of Ukraine, D’Agata said of the latter country, “This isn’t a place, with all due respect, like Iraq or Afghanistan, that has seen conflict raging for decades.”

“This is a relatively civilized, relatively European — I have to choose those words carefully, too — city, where you wouldn’t expect that or hope that it’s going to happen,” he said.

Mohsen Pakaein, Iran’s former ambassador to the Republic of Azerbaijan, says the remarks by the Leader obviously shows racist approach of the West toward Africans in Ukraine.

Writing on the Khamenei.ir website, the former diplomat says ethnic Asians, including Indians, were also subjected to racism while trying to flee the war in Ukraine.

For example, Pakaein says, some Africans and Asians were not allowed to board trains to leave the country and they were forced to spend the night in train stations.

Such discriminatory behavior prompted the African Union to issue a formal statement to condemn “misbehavior” toward Africans.

The head of United Nations refugee agency, United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), also spoke out against the "ugly reality" that some refugees fleeing across the Ukraine border, and third country nationals, have been subjected to racism and discrimination.

In a statement issued marking the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, Filippo Grandi said that although he had been "humbled" by the outpouring of support seen by communities welcoming well over millions of Ukrainian refugees since the Russian invasion began, many minorities - often foreigners who had been studying or working there - had described a very different experience.

"We also bore witness to the ugly reality, that some Black and Brown people fleeing Ukraine - and other wars and conflicts around the world - have not received the same treatment as Ukrainian refugees," he said, according to allAfrica.com.

Representatives from the three African nations on the UN Security Council -- Kenya, Ghana, and Gabon -- all condemned reports of discrimination against African citizens at the Ukrainian border. "In the unfolding emergency, there have been disturbing reports about the racist treatment of Africans and people of African descent seeking to flee Ukraine to safety. The media is covering these appalling incidents and several states have confirmed that their citizens are suffering such treatment. We strongly condemn this racism and believe that it is damaging to the spirit of solidarity that is so urgently needed today.”

To exemplify racism by the Europeans, Poland is an example.

Poland refused to accept decision by the European Commission to accept Syrian refugees, however, it has announced that it is ready to host hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian refugees.

A former Ukrainian deputy prosecutor general has also said he is saddened while he notices that European citizens with “blue eyes” and “blonde hairs” are being killed by missiles launched by Russia. The Bulgarian prime minister has also described Ukrainian refugees as “intelligent and educated”.

These moves and remarks show that racism is still high in some European states, especially those in Eastern Europe. Contrary to such revolting behaviors or remarks, non-European countries warmly welcomed refugees from Europe during World War II.

Moreover, the West, including Europeans, have been oblivious to the sufferings of people in West Asia. Yemen is a concrete example. The West not only did not make efforts to stop the war in Yemen, they even misused the situation to sell arms to the Saudi-led coalition in the war on Yemen. They were thinking of their pockets and not wedding ceremonies that turned out to be tragic scenes in the Saudi bombardments.

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