47th session of the Human Rights Council Interactive Dialogue on the update of the Special Rapporteur on Myanmar

Ministry Statements & Speeches:

Delivered by Lucy Duncan, New Zealand Permanent Representative, 7 July 2021.

Madam President,

New Zealand wishes to again put on record our concerns regarding the worsening human rights and humanitarian situation in Myanmar. We are also concerned that the situation will deteriorate further, including for vulnerable groups such as the Rohingya.

The 1 February military coup was a significant setback for Myanmar’s progress towards democracy, peace, and economic development. New Zealand continues to call for a return to civilian rule which respects the will of the people.

We remain deeply concerned at the increasing levels of violence used by Myanmar’s military against peaceful protestors, children and civilians. We deplore the use of violence and summary executions and we call for those responsible to be held to account. A critical first step is the immediate cessation of violence, and the release of all who have been arbitrarily detained, including foreign nationals and those facing politically-motivated charges.

Finally, in recent weeks letters have been issued to Myanmar students, including in New Zealand, seeking declarations of their non-involvement in anti-coup activities and including threats of punishment for the provision of false information in response. New Zealand has made its views known to Myanmar that such letters are an unacceptable violation of the human rights to freedom of expression and opinion and amount to harassment and intimidation. We would be interested to know if the Special Rapporteur has received any information regarding such letters being sent to students or to any other Myanmar citizens residing in third countries.

Thank you.


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