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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

UN Will Investigate Racist Attacks

GENEVA -- A United Nations human rights investigator began a weeklong visit to Russia on Monday to probe a growing wave of racist killings and beatings.

Doudou Diene, UN special rapporteur for contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, is to meet officials and activist groups in Moscow and St. Petersburg during the trip, which ends Saturday.

"There has been a very serious rise in the number of racist attacks in the Russian Federation, including murders, especially in Moscow and St. Petersburg, and this will be the main subject of concern," UN human rights spokesman Jose-Luis Diaz told reporters in announcing the visit Friday.

A UN statement said Diene would also visit "several communities that are reportedly victims of discrimination."

Diene, who is from Senegal, will report his findings to the General Assembly in a few months, the statement said.