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Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, General recommendation No. 35 Combating racist hate speech

‘24. Article 5 of the Convention enshrines the obligation of States parties to prohibit and eliminate racial discrimination and to guarantee the right of everyone, without distinction as to race, colour, or national or ethnic origin, to equality before the law, notably in the enjoyment of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the rights to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, freedom of opinion and expression, and freedom of peaceful assembly and association.‘
‘25. The Committee considers that the expression of ideas and opinions made in the context of academic debates, political engagement or similar activity, and without incitement to hatred, contempt, violence or discrimination, should be regarded as legitimate exercises of the right to freedom of expression, even when such ideas are controversial.‘
‘26. In addition to its inclusion in article 5, freedom of opinion and expression is recognized as a fundamental right in a broad range of international instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which affirm that everyone has the right to hold opinions and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds through any media and regardless of frontiers. The right to freedom of expression is not unlimited but carries with it special duties and responsibilities. It may therefore be subject to certain restrictions, but only if they are provided by law and are necessary for protection of the rights or reputations of others and for the protection of national security or of public order, or of public health or morals. Freedom of expression should not aim at the destruction of the rights and freedoms of others, including the right to equality and non-discrimination.‘