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General Debate - Item 10 - Statement by Ireland

Human Rights Council – 33rd session (13th – 30th September 2016) 

Statement by Ireland

General Debate under Item 10

28 September 2016

Ireland aligns itself with the statement of the European Union and adds the following.

Mr. President,

We thank the OHCHR for its comprehensive reports, some of which we have addressed during interactive dialogues earlier this session. These reports emphasise the essential role the OHCHR’s technical assistance and capacity-building plays in advancing implementation of human rights at a national level and we take this opportunity to reiterate our strong and continued support to the Office.

With this in mind, we call on the Cambodian authorities to renew the Memorandum of Understanding with the OHCHR to ensure continued cooperation in improving the human rights situation in Cambodia. We welcome the reported strong degree of cooperation with the OHCHR’s rule of law programme. However, we are concerned at the alleged repeated infringements of the rights to the freedoms of expression, association, peaceful assembly and movement that restrict democratic space as detailed further in our statement during the interactive dialogue on Cambodia.

Ireland also remains seriously concerned by the reports on the situation of human rights in the context of the deepening humanitarian crisis in Yemen. We are appalled by the accounts of attacks and unlawful killings of journalists and human rights defenders, restrictions on freedom of expression and arbitrary deprivation of liberty. We reiterate that civilians must be protected, humanitarian access ensured and access to medical care and facilities provided. We urge all parties to the conflict to ensure strict compliance with their obligations under international human rights and humanitarian law and call for any violations to be fully investigated and perpetrators held accountable. In this regard, we support the High Commissioner’s call for an international investigative body to be established. We call on the government and members of the national commission of inquiry to continue to work closely with the OHCHR. We furthermore urge this Council to adopt a resolution that reflects the gravity of the human rights situation in Yemen.    

Thank you, Mr. President.