UN human rights council to hold special session on Myanmar crisis


The Human Rights Council will hold a special session on “the human rights implications of the crisis in Myanmar” mainly in a virtual format from the Assembly Hall of the Palais des Nations, on Friday, February 12.

The decision to hold the special session was made after a joint request by the United Kingdom and the European Union, supported by 45 States so far.

The request said the special session was needed because of “the importance and urgency of the situation”.

The call for the session was backed by 19 members of the 47-member forum, mainly Western countries joined by Japan and South Korea.

The United States – which announced on Monday that it was returning to the forum it quit in June 2018 – was among 28 observer states listed as supporting the move.

Supporters were discussing a draft resolution to be presented for adoption at the session, diplomats said.

Tens of thousands of people took to the streets for a third day on Monday to protest against the coup that overthrew Aung San Suu Kyi’s civilian government.

Senior General Min Aung Hlaing said his junta would hold a new election and hand power to the winner.

Julian Braithwaite, Britain’s ambassador to the UN in Geneva, told an organisational meeting of the Human Rights Council that the detention of elected politicians and civilians by the military “has grave implications for human rights in the country”.

He noted that Thomas Andrews, the UN investigator on human rights in Myanmar, has called for convening a special session to show Myanmar citizens “they are not alone in their hour of danger and need.”

“Above all, we must respond urgently to the plight of the people in Myanmar and the rapidly deteriorating human rights situation there,” Braithwaite said. (Source: CNA)