Remarks at a UN Third Committee Dialogue with Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Myanmar, Yanghee Lee

Ambassador Larry Dinger
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
New York City
October 22, 2019


Special Rapporteur Lee, thank you for your reporting on the situation of human rights in Myanmar and your focus on for the rights of victims and survivors of human rights abuses and violations. We regret that the Government of Myanmar has suspended cooperation with your mandate, and we urge the government to urgently re-engage with you.

The United States continues to be deeply concerned about the declining protection of fundamental freedoms in Myanmar. We call for the unconditional and immediate release of all those who have been arbitrarily detained, including filmmaker Min Htin Ko Ko Gyi, and for an end to the use of problematic laws to stifle freedom of expression, freedom of religion, and other fundamental freedoms.

We call for unhindered humanitarian and media access to Rakhine, Kachin, and Shan States, as well as other areas affected by violence across the country; and the creation of conditions allowing for safe, dignified, voluntary, and sustainable return of refugees and internally displaced persons to their places of origin or to places of their own choosing in Myanmar, including accountability for those responsible for human rights violations and abuses. The United States calls on the Government of Myanmar to address victims’ calls for justice.

We also call on the government to implement the recommendations of the Kofi Annan-chaired Advisory Commission on Rakhine State, including those regarding freedom of movement, access to health services, livelihoods, security reform, and meaningful access to citizenship for Rohingya remaining in Rakhine State.

Special Rapporteur Lee: How can the international community best support credible accountability mechanisms like the Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar (IIMM)?

Thank you.