A United Nations "Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent" is in Chicago this week as part of a multi-city, fact-finding visit to the United States to gather "first-hand information about the current human rights situation of African Americans."
The working group will visit Chicago, Baltimore, Jackson, Mississippi, New York City and Washington D.C. from January 19 to January 29. The group is in Chicago for two days, Sunday and Monday, and is holding hearings at Chicago State University.
The black rights group International People's Democratic Uhuru Movement (InPDUM) is setting up tent encampments outside the hearings in the four cities, including at Chicago State University. The group is hosting political education sessions, rallies and marches as part of its demonstrations.
InPDUM members are also participating in the hearings to call for, among other demands, "black community control of the police."
"InPDUM has initiated a petition drive charging the American government with genocide for it's treatment of Africans in the U.S., citing several U.N. international law conventions," reads a news release from the group. "They are calling for the convening of an international tribunal to put the U.S. government on trial and demanding reparations for 500 years of genocide, slavery and the colonial theft of Africa's resources."
As part of its multi-city visit to the United States, the Working Group "will address current concerns and assess progress made in combatting racial discrimination, Afrophobia, xenophobia and protecting and promoting the human rights of African Americans," according to an announcement.
A report with the Working Group's findings and recommendations will be presented to the UN Human Rights Council in September 2016.