Anti-Asian racism: Covid-19 exacerbates violence in France and around the world


18:11 30.03.2021Short url

Since the emergence of the Covid-19 epidemic, attacks against Asians have increased. Between online insults, physical threats or derogatory remarks, they no longer feel safe. A global phenomenon that affects France. Analysis.

A phenomenon that is growing. Since the start of the Covid-19 epidemic, Asian nationals have been the target of attacks around the world. Latest case in New York where a woman has been beaten up in the street, explains the New York Post in an article published on March 29. According to investigators, this attack is racist. The New York Police Hate Crimes Unit has recorded a 1,300% increase in racist crimes against Asian Americans since the start of the pandemic.

According to a report carried out by Stop AAPI Hate (American association for the fight against discrimination against Asians), cited by The world, the organization identified between 2020 and the end of February 2021, nearly 3,800 assaults, incidents, harassment, insults and spitting in the United States.

Global hatred

So many incidents that prompted BTS, a famous K-Pop (Korean pop) group, to publish a letter on social networks in support of the Stop Asian Hate movement, born following the upsurge in xenophobic acts in the United States. . “We are in mourning and angry. As Asians, we have also been victims of racism. We have been the butt of insults and ridicule because of our appearance. We were even asked why Asians speak English», Testified the members of the group.

If the situation is worrying across the Atlantic, France is not left out. On the Côte d’Azur, some nationals of the Middle Kingdom have decided to leave the region for fear of reprisals, said Manqi Yu, president of the association of the Chinese community of the Côte d’Azur, to CNEWS.

“We are regularly victims of intimidation on social networks […] Compatriots have even received threats of physical attacks, ”he lamented.

Contacted by Sputnik, Jacques Sun, president of CRAAF (Representative Council of Asian Associations), believes, in absolute terms, that the health crisis accentuates violence in society. According to him, it is therefore not only directed against the Franco-Asian community. Optimistic, he hopes that with “measures taken by the government“, The epidemiological situation will improve and, as a result, will help reduce the tensions generated by the Covid-19.

In addition, Jacques Sun recalls that it is absolutely necessary to tackle online hatred, especially on social networks. To do this, he calls for a legislative reaction from the government.

“The virality of this kind of hate speech is incredible. I think the government will take measures against the circulation of hate online, whether for the Asian community, but also for others, ”argues the president of CRAAF.

The trial of five students also opened on March 23 at the Paris judicial court after a campaign of hate on Twitter and calls for murder launched last October. Among the incriminated messages, some are of rare violence: “I call on all the renois and rebeus of France to attack every Chinese they meet in the street“, or “Hitler should have killed the Chinese, not the Jews.»

John Sifton, director of the Asia division of Human Rights Watch, pleaded with authorities in countries affected by this violence:

“Governments should act to raise public awareness, promote tolerance and counter hate speech, while aggressively launching investigations and prosecutions of those who commit hate crimes.”



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