In a two-page decision that was dated Aug. 18 but released on Wednesday, a day after Washington was informed, the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination invoked “early action and urgent warning procedures” in deploring the violence and urging the United States to investigate.
The urgent-warning procedure allows the committee to draw attention to situations that could “spiral into terrible events” and require immediate action, Ms. Crickley said.
The committee last invoked the procedures last year, when it condemned “reports of killings, summary executions, disappearances and torture, many of which appear to have an ethnic character,” in Burundi.
The committee called the Charlottesville violence, which took place mainly on Aug. 11 and 12, “horrifying” and said it was “alarmed by the racist demonstrations, with overtly racist slogans, chants and salutes by individuals belonging to groups of white nationalists, neo-Nazis, and the Ku Klux Klan, promoting white supremacy and inciting racial discrimination and hatred.”
The committee cited two victims by name: Heather D. Heyer, 32, who was killed when a driver plowed a car into a crowd, and Deandre Harris, 20, who was savagely beaten by white supremacists wielding poles.
An Ohio man, James Alex Fields Jr., 20, has been charged with second-degree murder over Ms. Heyer’s death. The committee urged that “all human rights violations which took place in Charlottesville, in particular with regards to the death of Ms. Heyer, are thoroughly investigated, alleged perpetrators prosecuted and if convicted, punished with sanctions commensurate with the gravity of the crime.”
The committee also called on the United States to identify and address the root causes of racism and to thoroughly investigate racial discrimination, in particular against “people of African descent, ethnic or ethno-religious…