Counselor for Economic and Social Affairs
New York, New York
October 13, 2021
High Commissioner Bachelet, your work promoting and protecting human rights is vital.
The United States would like to call attention to the disturbing trend of repression, harassment and violence targeted towards human rights defenders residing outside national borders. Iran, China, Saudi Arabia, Russia, and Belarus are some of the worst offenders.
In Afghanistan, we appreciate OHCHR’s documentation of abuses. The UN Security Council has laid out the expectations to which we will hold the Taliban accountable when it comes to respecting human rights.
We strongly condemn China’s genocide and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang and other abuses, including extreme restrictions on the exercise of human rights in Tibet and Hong Kong. We were pleased to see you plan to make public OHCHR’s documentation of abuses in Xinjiang.
In Syria, we appreciate the Commission of Inquiry’s efforts to document abuses by the Assad regime, some of which rise to the level of war crimes.
In Venezuela, we appreciate OHCHR’s documentation of ongoing human rights abuses.
We share your concerns about human rights abuses in northern Ethiopia, including those involving gender-based violence, including sexual violence.
Madam High Commissioner: What can member states do to end impunity for reprisals against human rights defenders who engage with the UN Special Procedures and broader UN system?