November 16, 2022
I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union and its Member States.
The Candidate Countries North Macedonia*, Montenegro*, Albania*, Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova, the country of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina, align themselves with this statement.
The resolution that the EU and the OIC are presenting today for adoption by the Third Committee of the General Assembly is about atrocities committed for many years against Rohingya and persons belonging to other minorities in Myanmar, and about atrocities committed against all the population of Myanmar since a military coup forcibly overthrew the civilian government in blatant violation of the will and democratic aspirations of the people of Myanmar on 1 February 2021.
The indiscriminate use of violence by the Myanmar armed and security forces across the country, the widespread cases of killings, torture and other forms of ill-treatment, the obstruction of humanitarian aid and the breaches of international humanitarian law, sexual and gender-based violence as well as the maiming and killing of children occurring every day in Myanmar are intolerable. The international community, in particular the United Nations and ASEAN must act to stop these atrocities. This joint resolution prepared by the EU and the OIC aims at contributing to this urgent call for action. I would like to thank the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh for the good cooperation in preparing the resolution.
We are appalled by the death sentences carried out by the junta in July 2022 against four pro-democracy activists, after decades with no recorded executions in Myanmar. We are extremely alarmed by the continued arbitrary detention of journalists, peaceful protesters and politicians, and by the unjustified restrictions to fundamental freedoms in Myanmar, aggravated by the junta. The continued military build-up and flow of arms into Myanmar also gravely undermine human rights and must stop immediately.
Rohingya and persons belonging to other minorities in Myanmar continue to face severe movement restrictions, impeded access to services and livelihoods, disenfranchisement and violations of their fundamental rights. The current situation in Myanmar also suppresses hopes for the voluntary, safe, dignified and sustainable return of the 1.5 million Rohingya and other minorities who have found refuge in Bangladesh and across the region.
This joint EU-OIC resolution is also about accountability: It sends a strong message on the importance of the work ongoing with the ICC and the ICJ, and calls on all countries to actively cooperate with the Independent Investigate Mechanism for Myanmar, including by facilitating access to witnesses of human rights violations.
The European Union wishes to express its unequivocal support for all the people of Myanmar, including Rohingya and other minorities, their democratic aspirations, and their legitimate expectation that their human rights and the rule of law be respected.
The European Union continues to underline the importance and urgency of the full implementation of the ASEAN “Five Point Consensus”. The EU stands ready to actively support ASEAN’s efforts towards the establishment of a constructive political dialogue, which is essential for the country’s return to a democratic path.
To conclude, let me express the EU’s deep appreciation to member states who have co-sponsored the resolution.