50h session of the Human Rights Council
Item 3 - Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association
Intervention by the Nordic – Baltic States delivered by H.E. Darius Staniulis, Ambassador of Lithuania to the United Nations Office and other International Organizations in Geneva
Thank you President.
I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Norway, Sweden and my own country Lithuania.
We thank the Special Rapporteur for his reports on access to funding and peaceful protests during crisis and express our full support for the renewal of his mandate this session.
Unfortunately, peaceful protests too often are met with repression, including the unlawful use of force, arbitrary arrests, torture and enforced disappearance. Instances in which governments manipulate digital technologies to deprive individuals of their ability to participate in collective action are also deeply concerning.
We strongly believe that States must take every opportunity to support diversity of civil society participation, including by ensuring that domestic provisions on registration, funding, reporting and other activities are in compliance with international human rights law, and are not misused to hinder the work or endanger the safety of civil society actors.
We express our full support and solidarity with those who dare to protest, in spite of the obvious risks to their life and wellbeing. We call for accountability for all human rights violations and abuses in the context of peaceful assembly and association.
Mr. Special Rapporteur, how may we better support and protect human rights defenders and civil society actors who are targeted by the legislation that unduly restricts their work and are judicially harassed in their own countries?