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HRC40: Statement by the Nordic States on High Commissioner and Secretary-General country reports or oral updates.

20.03.2019 

United Nations Human Rights Council 40th session

High Commissioner and Secretary-General country reports or oral updates
20th of March 2019

Intervention by the Nordic States delivered by Sweden, Ambassador Veronika Bard

Mr. President,
I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic countries [Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden].
We would like to thank the High Commissioner for the updates and reiterate our full support and continued cooperation with the High Commissioner and her Office.
We live in challenging times for human rights, democracy and the rule of law. We therefore value that States seek your Offices’ guidance and technical cooperation. Only in 2018 OHCHR has opened two new country offices in Liberia and Chad and employed twelve new human rights advisors, in response to States requests for technical cooperation. We commend all States that cooperate with your Office and reiterate our own commitment to continue to do so.

 The OHCHR’s field presence plays an essential role in identifying, highlighting, and developing responses to human rights challenges, in close collaboration with governments, the United Nations system and civil society. We see that the OHCHR has a crucial role within the reformed UN System at country level to guide States towards the full implementation of obligations under international human rights law, where the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals and the implementation of UPR recommendations are important elements. We therefore welcome further strengthening of the field presence. 
Meanwhile, we are concerned that your Office as well as the special procedures continue to be denied access to several countries. We call on all States to fully cooperate and grant them full and unhindered access.
Madame High Commissioner, how do you see that increased cooperation by States with your Office is best promoted? 
I thank you