Myanmar: Oral statement at the United Nations Human Rights Council


On 19 March 2024, the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) delivered a statement at the 55th session of the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council for the Interactive Dialogue with the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar. The statement urged the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states, including Thailand, to take action to end human rights abuses, hold the perpetrators accountable, and seek the release of political prisoners in Myanmar. Read the statement below.

UN Human Rights Council – 55th session

Item 4: Interactive Dialogue with the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar

19 March 2024

Mister President,

FIDH and its member organizations ALTSEAN-Burma and Women’s Peace Network thank the Special Rapporteur for his report.

Since February 2021, every single session of the Human Rights Council has discussed the situation in Myanmar. Regrettably, all this talk has not been matched by the necessary action, to prevent the catastrophic human rights developments that continue to occur and have escalated.

More than 4,600 civilians have been killed by the junta. The number of political prisoners has surpassed 20,000. Persecution of Rohingya in Rakhine State has escalated, with forced military recruitment of youth under the conscription law and indiscriminate artillery shelling of Rohingya civilian villages.

ASEAN bears a special responsibility for this situation, because it has given the junta vital time to perpetuate the most serious crimes with impunity. This must change. ASEAN member states must support, enact, and enforce measures that ensure the junta does not acquire additional resources and arms that will be used against the people of Myanmar and must facilitate international efforts to hold the perpetrators of human rights violations accountable. They should also work to seek the release of all political prisoners in Myanmar.

We particularly urge the government of Thailand to break with the harmful policy of direct engagement with the junta, pursued by previous administrations. The Thai government should facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid through existing civil society-led cross-border initiatives, prioritize engagement with the National Unity Government, and ensure that refugees and migrant workers from Myanmar are treated humanely and are not repatriated.

Thank you.

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