Statement by Ambassador H.E. Mr. Htin Lynn, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Myanmar at the 27th Special Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council
Consideration and action on A/HRC/S-27/L.1
Geneva, 5 December 2017
Paragraph 117 e (i) of document A/HRC/RES/5/1 on working culture of the Human Rights Council explicitly mentioned the need for minimizing unnecessary duplication of initiatives with the General Assembly/Third Committee. The holding of Special Session today and its intended outcome thereon is a clear departure from this decision.
As a matter of principle and like many is this chamber, Myanmar opposes any country specific resolutions. They are not conducive to meaningful dialogue but give rise also to polarization, division and even confrontation.
The country specific resolution today is no exception. It is regrettable to see that our collective efforts in acting as responsible members of the council for strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights around the globe are slowly and gradually drifting away from the cardinal principles of impartiality, objectivity, non-selectiveness and balance. Pre-determined politicization and partiality seems to be taking roots in our work.
Myanmar undoubtedly is the one who has the highest concern about challenges in Rakhine State. Myanmar welcomes the assistance and efforts by the international community in addressing the issue. However, it should be part of the solution, not part of the problem. While we share the concern by the international community, any effort by the international community should not be fanning the flame on the ground.
The draft resolution is focusing on a particular group of people belonging to a particular faith. Promoting and Protection of Human Rights should be for all people of the globe irrespective of race, religion and gender. A United Nations forum such as Human Rights Council should not be a platform for such a biased approach, setting a bad precedence for the Council.
Let me turn to the text of draft resolution under consideration.
Some elements in the draft resolution is infringing on the state sovereignty of Myanmar. Some are far from truth and not in line with situation on the ground. Using unverified figures in the draft resolution is also unethical and unprofessional. Allegations without sufficient and concrete body of evidence are also incorporated in the text.
It is also questionable that whether considering Myanmar at all forums of the United Nations is based on a genuine goodwill or otherwise. It is also questionable that whether we are spending the budget of the United Nations effectively and efficiently.
– Multiple elements in some of the PPs and OPs are simply copied from the recommendations of Rakhine Advisory Commission led by Dr. Kofi Annan and pasted in the text of the draft resolution. Elements such as freedom of movement, humanitarian access, inter-communal dialogue, economic and social development, citizenship law, national verification in the recommendations of the Rakhine Advisory Commission were pick up selectively and reproduced negatively. As the government is already implementing the Advisory Committee’s recommendations, we should ask ourselves what is the value added we could possibly achieve in this exercise.
– The draft resolution fails to condemn the attacks of the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army- ARSA against police and military posts on 25 August 2017 which had triggered unprecedented humanitarian situation in Rakhine State. Since their first attack in October 9, 2016, the so-called “ARSA” claimed responsibility in an 18-minute video released very shortly. Shying away to denounce such terrorist attacks by their name is tacitly approving their acts. If it is the cases, these acts will go on wherever these people are.
– We have been dissociating ourselves from an independent, international Fact-Finding Mission to Myanmar as it is not in harmony with the situation on the ground and our national circumstances. As of today, this position remains unchanged.
– In relation to the OP 20, Myanmar has been responding and providing all necessary information as and when requested by all special procedure mandate holders. Like many member states, we are not in a position to invite and receive them all into the country at this juncture.
– By virtue of OP 21 and 22, Myanmar will be on the agenda of almost all forthcoming regular sessions of the Council if we include reporting requirements of the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Myanmar and Fact-Finding Mission. This undue attention is redundant and excessive for a country which has been facilitating the mandate of successive Special Rapporteurs into the country since 1992.
For these reasons, my delegation shall dissociate itself from the resolution under consideration.
The complexity of Rakhine issue is gigantic, and thus requires a closer and better understanding of the challenges in Rakhine State by the International Community.
Myanmar is responding the calls made by the international community with progress being made and continue to make on the ground. We shall continue to work relentlessly to address immediate and long term challenges of the Rakhine State, with or without a resolution by the Human Rights Council.— MNA