UN Human Rights Council 48th Session – Item 2: General Debate with High Commissioner – Intervention by ESTONIA

Thank you Madame President,
Distinguished High Commissioner,

The human rights situation at global level has sadly reversed in recent years. The more worrying is the human rights situation, the more attention and requests the High Commissioner and her Office will receive. The responsibility of the Human Rights Council is growing. We highly appreciate the attention of the High Commissioner on the most acute human rights situations in the world.

Three weeks ago, the HRC held a special session on Afghanistan. Unfortunately, the promises of the country’s interim leaders have not been confirmed in practice. We must use all tools of international cooperation at our disposal to guarantee the constitutional protection of human rights of all people of Afghanistan, particularly women, children and persons belonging to minorities.

For more than a year, the human rights situation has been deteriorating in the centre of European continent, in Belarus. A massive crackdown on human rights defenders, journalists and other media workers, as well as on political opponents and civil society organizations is continuing with impunity. We must reiterate consistently and tirelessly: all political prisoners must be released immediately and all perpetrators of the crimes must be brought to justice and punished, democratic elections must be held.

Madame President,

To conclude, we call on all countries to cooperate fully with the OHCHR, the treaty bodies and the Council’s mechanisms. All independent human rights mechanisms should have full and unconditional access to countries’ territories, including occupied areas, to conduct most efficient human rights monitoring.

Thank you!