We must bring what is happening in Belarus to the world’s attention and hear from those on the ground. Briefers on #BYHumanRights: UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus, Anaïs Marin; Belarusian opposition presidential candidate Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya; Vice-Chairman of the Viasna Human Rights Center, Valiantsin Stefanovic; Legal Expert for the Belarusian Association of Journalists, Volha Siakhovich. The meeting is chaired by Urmas Reinsalu, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Estonia. The meeting was initiated by Estonia and co-sponsored by UN Security Council members the United States and United Kingdom, as well as Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, and Ukraine.

Stakeout by Belgium, Estonia, France, Germany and Poland on Myanmar

The UN Security Council received a briefing from Special Envoy Christine Burgener today to discuss developments in Myanmar.

The past and current EU members of the Security Council (Belgium, Estonia, France, Germany and Poland) express their concern about the military escalation in Rakhine and Chin States and call for an immediate, comprehensive and nationwide ceasefire. We strongly condemn the deadly attack on a WHO vehicle in April and support the Secretary-General’s appeal for a global ceasefire.

We emphasize the importance of an inclusive response to the COVID19 pandemic that protects all communities and takes into account the vulnerability of refugees and internally displaced persons. Humanitarian and health care workers need rapid, safe and unhindered access to provide assistance to those most in need. We call for the lifting of restrictions on the freedom of movement and the internet with a view to improving access to healthcare and healthcare information.

We underline the importance of voluntary, safe and dignified repatriation of the Rohingya to Myanmar when conducive humanitarian, security and political conditions are met. We express our concern about the situation of refugees seeking shelter over sea and call for a regional response with regards to search and rescue operations. We also call for the respect of international law, notably international refugee law and the respect of the principle of non-refoulement We note with appreciation the efforts of the Government of Bangladesh to provide protection for refugee communities.

We further urge Myanmar to address the root causes of the conflict, including by fully implementing the Rakhine Advisory Commission recommendations and the Security Council presidential statement adopted on the 6th of November 2017, and to ensure full accountability for the crimes committed against the Rohingya.

We recall that Myanmar is under the obligation to comply with the provisional measures indicated by the ICJ, according to international law.

In conclusion, we reaffirm our support for the efforts of the UN in Myanmar.