Item 4 - Interactive dialogue on the progress oral report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar. JST GoF CAAC. (04.07.2024)

56th session of the Human Rights Council

Interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on Myanmar - 4th July

Draft joint statement on behalf of 28 countries members of the Group of Friends on Children and Armed Conflict[1]



I deliver this statement on behalf of 28 countries of the Group of Friends on Children and Armed Conflict co-chaired by Uruguay and Belgium.

The recent UN Secretary-General’s Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflict, reveals that children in conflict situations faced unbearable levels of violence in 2023. Children were killed and maimed in unprecedented numbers in devastating crises in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory, notably in the Gaza Strip, in Burkina Faso, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Myanmar, Somalia, the Sudan, the Syrian Arab Republic and Ukraine, among many other situations.

In Myanmar, the situation is particularly dire. In 2023, grave violations against children rose by 123 per cent. There has been a surge in the recruitment and use, the killing and maiming of children, as well as attacks on schools and hospitals. Patterns of indiscriminate and targeted attacks, including the use of explosive ordnance affecting children, are also of particular concern.

We urge all parties to comply with international humanitarian law and international human rights law. We call on the Myanmar armed forces to re-engage with the UN for the full implementation of the 2012 joint action plan to end the recruitment and use of children, and to adopt measures to end and prevent killing and maiming of children, sexual violence, abductions, denial of humanitarian access, and attacks on schools and hospitals. Additionally, we call on all listed armed groups that have not done so to sign joint action plans with the UN. We also call for the immediate release of children detained or recruited and used, the implementation of the July 2019 Child Rights Law, and safe, timely, and unimpeded humanitarian access.

Mr Special Rapporteur,

Two years have passed since you released a conference room paper documenting the plight of Myanmar’s children following the 2021 military coup, and the situation has only worsened. How can the Human Rights Council support efforts to enhance the prevention of and accountability for grave violations against children in Myanmar?

[1] Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Guatemala, Hungary, Italy, Jordania, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Slovenia, Poland, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Uruguay.