Item 4 - Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus. NB8 Lithuania. (03.07.2024)

56th UN Human Rights Council Session

Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus.

Statement of the Republic of Lithuania, on behalf of Nordic-Baltic States,

delivered by the Minister for Foreign Affairs H. E. Mr. Gabrielius Landsbergis

2 July 2024

Thank you, Mr. President,

I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic States.

Madam Special Rapporteur,

As your tenure is ending, allow me to extend our sincere gratitude for your tireless efforts to work with persisting human rights violations in Belarus and to support the Belarusian civil society.

As indicated in your latest assessment, human rights situation in Belarus continues to deteriorate and repressions have reached unprecedented levels.

Some of the violations committed in Belarus may amount to crimes against humanity.

There are at least 1400 political prisoners in Belarus, many held incommunicado, in inhuman conditions, exposed to torture, with serious health issues, in some cases even leading to deaths.

More international attention to this issue and increased pressure on Belarusian side is necessary.

Belarus must fulfil its obligations under international human rights law. We must hold Belarusian authorities accountable for human rights violations, as well as for complicity in Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. Impunity only emboldens them to continue their wrongdoings. We should also actively counter disinformation disseminated by the authorities and state-sponsored media.

Madam Special Rapporteur,

We strongly support your mandate and expect that mission to be further continued.

We would also appreciate your overview on what were the most problematic aspects when implementing your mandate throughout these years, and where we – as the UN Human Rights Council or individual members – could better support the future Special Rapporteur.

I thank you.