European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI)

Round Table on “Dialogue against violence organised by ECRI on the occasion of the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination - Thursday 21 March 2002



Yasmin Alibhai-Brown is the author of several books including No Place Like Home, Who Do We Think We Are? and After Multiculturalism.

She has worked as a journalist for The Guardian, New Statesman and other newspapers and is now a regular columnist for The Independent, as well as a television and radio broadcaster. She has been a Research Fellow at the Institute of Public Policy Research since 1996 and a Senior Research Fellow at the Foreign Policy Centre since 1999.

She is also a member of the Home Office Race Forum and advises various key institutions on race matters.


Michael Head is the present Chair of the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) and has been the ECRI member from the United Kingdom since 1996. In addition, and within the UK, he sits on the Boards of a local criminal justice agency and a national charity.

He was a career civil servant in the Home Office from 1960-1996 and from 1991-1996, he was the senior official (Director General) in charge of the Home Office Department responsible for race relations issues in the UK. This included responsibility for anti-discrimination legislation and for the budget and oversight of the work of the Commission for Racial Equality.


Theo Van Boven is Professor of Law at the Universities of Maastricht and Leiden (Netherlands). His other current functions include: Special Rapporteur on torture of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights and Vice-President of the International Commission of Jurists.

Mr Van Boven has previously served as the Director of the United Nations Division of Human Rights and as an expert member of the UN Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. He has written extensively on issues relating to human rights and international humanitarian law.


Karmela Liebkind is a Professor of Social Psychology at the University of Helsinki. She is a permanent expert member of the Finnish Commission Against Racism and Intolerance and was member of the European Commission Against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) from 1994 to 2000.

She was consulted by the European Commission in 1999 to conduct a feasibility study for the European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia on the definition and steps to be taken to develop and establish RAXEN (the European Network of Racism and Xenophobia) as she has done extensive research in the area of intergroup relations. She edited and contributed substantially to the book “New Identities in Europe. Immigrant Ancestry and the Ethnic Identity of Youth” and has published extensively on ethnic identity, acculturation and racism in various international scientific journals.


Bechaļa Kadi-Ouaraz has been a local councillor of Evry, a town of 50.280 inhabitants, since 1995. She has been actively involved in associative life since the age of 21. Trained and qualified as an organiser of social and cultural activities, she manages various associations and is responsible for an organisation offering training in mediation.

Her daily combat is: to fight against all forms of discrimination and to act in the exercise of citizenship; to promote access to equal representation in political, economic, administrative, cultural and social spheres, based on universal values, for persons of immigrant origin; to open and be at the forefront of political debate on the lack of municipal representation of these persons.


Pascale Charhon is currently Director of the European Jewish Information Centre (CEJI) and Vice-Chair of the European Network against Racism (ENAR).

Following a training course at the European Commission, she worked first in the private sector before joining the CEJI in 1994.

In the course of her career, she has developed a specific interest in training programmes focusing on personal development. Furthermore, she has experience in setting up and implementing training programmes particularly adapted to the needs of the education sector, both formal and informal, throughout Europe