Joint oral statement on the report of the Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar
13 September 2023

Joint oral statement on the report of the Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar

On 11 September 2023, Lawyers for Lawyers, the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute, The Law Society of England and Wales and Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada delivered an oral statement during the Interactive Dialogue on the report of the Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar. The Interactive dialogue took place during the 54th session of the UN Human Rights Council.

The statement reads as follows:

Mr. President,

Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada, the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute, Lawyers for Lawyers, and The Law Society of England and Wales, thank the Investigative Mechanism for its crucial work,[1] including engagement with civil society who face escalating danger of persecution amid the junta’s brazen and indiscriminate attacks on civilians.

Those reporting violations risk reprisals, including judicial harassment and arbitrary detention with denial of legal representation and other fair trial rights. Lawyers, whose training equips them to gather evidence of violations, face restrictions,[1] intimidation, surveillance, threats, fabricated charges, and arbitrary detention.[2]
Lawyers are denied access to Myanmar’s numerous forcibly disappeared clients.[1] At least 38 lawyers[2] are themselves arbitrarily detained, including dismaying reports of severe torture.

We urge the Council to ensure adequate resources for the Investigative Mechanism to fulfil its mandate. We urge all Council members, observer States, UN bodies, ASEAN members, and corporations to:

  • halt any statements or actions that legitimize the junta;
  • ensure protection of those fleeing violations in Myanmar; and
  • promote a strong Security Council resolution for an arms embargo, sanctions, and referral to the International Criminal Court.

 

Thank you.

 

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