Oral Statement for the Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar

10/03/2020
Statement

Madam Vice-President,

FIDH and its member organizations, ALTSEAN-Burma and Women Peace Network, wish to thank Madam Rapporteur Yanghee Lee for her outstanding work and firm commitment towards the improvement of the human rights situation in Myanmar over the past six years.

We support the designation of Mr. Thomas Andrews as Ms. Lee’s successor and we urge the government of Myanmar to grant the incoming mandate holder full and unfettered access to all parts of the country.

We welcome the International Court of Justice’s imposition of provisional measures to protect Rohingya in Myanmar. Regrettably, recent developments show the government is failing to comply with the provisional measures. Rohingya civilians continue to be targeted by Tatmadaw attacks, their freedom of movement remains restricted, and they are routinely subjected to arbitrary arrest and detention.

After more than three years since the latest wave of attacks against Rohingya in Rakhine State, we note that the government has not yet created the necessary conditions for the safe, voluntary, and dignified return of Rohingya refugees.

As Myanmar readies to enter an election period, it is apparent that in almost five years in power, the National League for Democracy-led government has failed to address many of the human rights challenges it inherited from the previous administration.

Repressive laws remain on the books and continue to be used by the authorities to severely curtail human rights and to jail activists, human rights defenders, and members of ethnic minorities. At the end of January, 214 political prisoners remained behind bars. Many ethnic minority areas remain mired in armed conflict, displacement, and militarization.

Madam Rapporteur: Do you think the overall human rights situation in Myanmar has improved or worsened since 2014? And what would be your main recommendation to your successor?

Thank you.

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