Adama Dieng urged Europe’s centre-left to do more to oppose a resurgence of xenophobia, alluding to a spreading backlash over an influx of migrants since 2015 that propelled far-right populists into national parliaments across Europe.
“We cannot allow human beings to be treated the way they are being treated. The signs of the ‘30s are resurfacing,” Dieng, a Senegalese lawyer, told a media briefing in Geneva.
“Unless we are blind or of bad faith, we should admit that its time to stand up, it is time to speak out.” He cited damage done by “powerful states” pulling out of international commitments, and by anti-immigrant politicians in Hungary and Italy. But he also accused left-wingers of playing cynical political games instead of robustly pushing back against the far right.