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HRC36: Denmark in interactive dialogue at the Human Rights Council on the situation of human rights in Burundi

19.09.2017  12:37

UN Human Rights Council
36th Session
Interactive Dialogue on Burundi, 18. September 2017
Intervention by Denmark

Mr. President,

We thank the Commission of Human Rights for its oral update on the grave human rights situation in Burundi.

Despite international and regional efforts to address the situation, we have not seen progress since the Council last met. Rather, we note with great concern that the situation continues to worsen: According to the information received, violations of human rights have gained in intensity – including arbitrary detentions, enforced disappearances, torture and sexual violence. The report by the Commission of Inquiry reveals a continuous threat and reason to believe, that serious crimes are committed against humanity in Burundi. 

The overall level of oppression has increased. Human rights violations are
systematic, and primarily committed by state agents and those linked to them, including
members of the security forces.

The space for political opposition is shrinking as freedoms of expression, association and
assembly are almost non-existent. We are alarmed by reports showing that members of the
Burundi ruling party’s youth league have committed torture, killings and severe violence. Denmark condemns these actions and stresses that impunity can never be accepted.

The situation in Burundi is forcing people to flee out of the country, but also to be displaced internally, the majority of which are children. Denmark reiterates its call upon the Government of Burundi to meet its responsibility to address the humanitarian crisis and respect human rights of all of its citizens.

Finally, we are deeply concerned by Burundi’s continued lack of cooperation with international actors including the OHCHR and the Commission of Inquiry. We encourage the Government of Burundi to cooperate with international and regional human rights organisations in turning this deteriorating situation around.

Thank you, Mr. President.