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We Strongly Condemn the Ongoing Violence Harming Civilians in Myanmar: Joint Statement at the UN Security Council

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Joint statement by the United Kingdom, Ecuador, France, Japan, Malta, Republic of Korea, Slovenia, Switzerland, and the United States.

5 February 2024

This morning the Security Council will convene a private meeting to discuss the situation in Myanmar. We will hear from Special Envoy Alounkeo Kittikhoun on Laos’ plans, as chair of ASEAN, to address the Myanmar crisis, and from Assistant Secretary-General Khiari for an update on the UN’s efforts in this regard.

I am making the following statement on behalf of Ecuador, France, Japan, Malta, the Republic of Korea, Slovenia, Switzerland, the United States, and the United Kingdom.

The first of February marked three years since the Myanmar military overturned the democratically elected government. The situation in the country remains dire.

We strongly condemn the ongoing violence harming civilians, including the military’s continued use of indiscriminate air strikes. We echo the call of ASEAN in urging the Myanmar Armed Forces, in particular, to cease its attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure.

Three years in, more than 18 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance, and 2.6 million have been and remain displaced from their homes. We reiterate the Council’s repeated call for full, rapid, safe, and unimpeded humanitarian access to all people in need, including women, children, and members of ethnic and other minority populations.

We remain deeply concerned about the situation in Rakhine State, which has further deteriorated following the breakdown of the ceasefire within the State. Rohingya, who have faced systematic discrimination for decades, continue to be disproportionately affected by the conflict.

We are increasingly concerned by the restrictions on freedom of movement, as well as the denial of access to medicine and medical care. We underscore the need to create conditions conducive to the voluntary, safe, dignified, and sustainable return of Rohingya refugees and internally displaced persons.

As set out in UN Security Council resolution 2669, we demand an immediate end to all forms of violence and urge restraint and de-escalation of tensions. We continue to urge the Myanmar military to immediately release all arbitrarily detained prisoners, including President Win Myint and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi.

We urge all parties to respect human rights, fundamental freedoms, the rule of law, and the democratic will and interests of the people of Myanmar. We remain deeply concerned at the continued lack of progress on these issues and once again call for the full implementation of resolution 2669.

We reiterate our strong support for ASEAN and the efforts of the ASEAN Chair, and acknowledge ASEAN’s central role in pursuit of a peaceful, comprehensive, and durable solution to the ongoing crisis.

We call on the Myanmar military to fulfil its commitments to effectively and fully implement the ASEAN Five Point Consensus. We look forward to the timely appointment of a Resident Coordinator and the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Myanmar to enable close coordination between ASEAN and the UN. We continue to stand in solidarity with the people of Myanmar and their desire for a peaceful, inclusive, and democratic future.

Thank you.

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