Item 4 - Interactive dialogue with the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on the Islamic Republic of Iran. NB8 Estonia. (18.03.2024)

55nd session of the United Nations Human Rights Council.

Interactive Dialogue with the Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic.

Statement delivered by H.E Ambassador Riia Salsa-Audiffren on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden.

18 March 2024

Mr President,

I have the honour to speak on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries.

We express our firm support for the essential work of the Commission of Inquiry. With deep regret, we note the Commission’s assessment that the violence is spiralling and the mounting and devastating effects of the massive human rights violations and abuses committed in Syria over thirteen years are only becoming more dramatic and serious year by year, continuing to wreck the lives of millions of Syrians.

We are very concerned about reports of alarming level of poverty and economic decline throughout Syria.

Since the ICJ issued its ruling to stop torture, enforced disappearances and deaths in Syria’s detention facilities, there have been new reports on killings of Syrians by torture and arbitrary arrests by the Syrian regime.  

We are deeply concerned about the continued patterns of alleged war crimes, and violations and abuses of international human rights law as well as violations of humanitarian law in this protracted armed conflict, particularly by the Syrian regime and its allies. Once again, civilians, especially women and girls, are disproportionately affected by the repeated cycles of violence. We stress the vital importance of ensuring accountability for mass atrocities and violations.

Mr Commissioner, what more can we do to ensure accountability on the basis of your findings?

I thank you!