Item 4 - Interactive dialogue on the OHCHR report on the situation of human rights in Belarus in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election and in its aftermath (HRC res. 46/20) (17.03.22)

Interactive Dialogue on OHCHR report on the situation of human rights in Belarus. 

Statement by Iceland on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries

17 March 2022

Mr. President,

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

We are deeply concerned by the findings of the OHCHR examination, in particular that violations have been widespread and systematic, and executed as an official policy.

The Lukashenko regime is on a destructive path, at home and abroad. We reiterate in the strongest possible terms our condemnation of Russia’s illegal and unprovoked aggression against Ukraine and Belarus’ involvement in it. We stand in full solidarity with Ukraine and its people.

Mr. President,

We call on Belarus to adhere to its international commitments and obligations under human rights law.

The relentless attack on civil society and independent voices, and the widespread use of disinformation in Belarus must stop. We urge an immediate and unconditional release of political prisoners and other arbitrarily detained persons, whose numbers rise constantly.

We continue to stand with the Belarusian people in their fight for a free and democratic society.

The Nordic-Baltic countries fully support a renewal of the OHCHR examination mandate, to ensure a further assessment of evidence from the perspective of applicable international criminal law.

Madame High Commissioner, how can civil society best continue to contribute to accountability efforts?

I thank you.