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Ministry Statements and Speeches 2011

Human Rights Council 16: Statement on Myanmar

New Zealand statement

Thank you Mr President

New Zealand wishes to join with others in conveying its heartfelt stmpathy for and solidarity with the people of Japan as they face the enormity of last week’s tragic disaster. 

New Zealand is pleased to welcome the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to the Council. We wish to take this opportunity to acknowledge your excellent work which is carried out under considerable constraints. New Zealand strongly supports the renewal of this mandate.

The human rights situation in the DPRK has not improved. Serious and systemic violations of human, civil and political rights continue. New Zealand continues to be extremely concerned about ongoing instances of arbitrary arrest and detention, and about the use of torture, “political prison camps” and collective punishments.

New Zealand is also very concerned about the protracted and worsening humanitarian crisis in the DPRK. The malnourishment of children, ongoing food shortages over a number of years, and escalating infant and maternal mortality rates – are all evidence that the DPRK must act urgently to meet the needs of its population. New Zealand calls on the DPRK to cooperate constructively with United Nations agencies and other humanitarian organisations to ensure the effective provision of and access to food and other basic necessities. 

In this regard, we would welcome any update you can provide, Mr Darusman,   on the humanitarian situation in and access for the United Nations agencies and other organisations to the DPRK, including prospects for a visit by the special rapporteur to the DPRK.

Thank you Mr President

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Page last updated: Wednesday, 09 January 2013 14:49 NZDT