Remarks at a UN Third Committee Dialogue with Mr. Fabián Salvioli, Special Rapporteur

John Giordano
Counselor
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
New York City
October 24, 2019

AS DELIVERED

Special Rapporteur Salvioli, the United States welcomes your report on practical experiences of domestic reparations programs.

We acknowledge the importance of justice for redressing and preventing atrocities including genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and other serious human rights violations and abuses.

The inclusion of victims and civil society is critical to the design and implementation of meaningful reparations mechanisms.

We appreciate attempts to highlight the specific needs of victims of sexual violence when considering the appropriate and safe means of victim participation in designing and implementing reparations programs.

Much more needs to be done to support victims and to hold those responsible accountable. In some Member States, those responsible include members of the government or security forces.

The United States strongly supports efforts to promote justice and accountability in Syria and continues to urge the Assad regime to refrain from arbitrary detentions, torture, and extrajudicial killings and take steps, such as the release of those arbitrarily detained, to rebuild trust. Accountability and justice are integral steps that must occur in order for there to be progress towards a long-term, sustainable political solution to the conflict.

The United States urges the Government of Myanmar to pursue justice for human rights violations and abuses across Myanmar, including by holding those responsible to account and providing victims with meaningful reparations for the harm they have suffered. The United States also maintains that the Government of Myanmar must create the conditions for the voluntary, safe, dignified, and sustainable return of Rohingya refugees from Bangladesh and to guarantee their rights consistent with the Annan Commission recommendations.

The United States supports Colombia’s transitional justice processes and recognizes their importance to securing the just and lasting peace that the Colombian people deserve.

The United States calls on the Government of Sri Lanka to continue its progress implementing the recommendations of its national Consultation Task Force and all processes outlined in Human Rights Council Resolution 30/1, including those related to transitional justice, reconciliation, and accountability.

Mr. Special Rapporteur: How should countries deal with the tension between victims’ often urgent need for reparations, and the desire to make sure reparations programs are comprehensive and address victims in a meaningful way?

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