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Statement of Iceland on the situation in Myanmar

39th session of the Human Rights Council

Statement in Interactive Dialogue with Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar

18 September 2018

Delivered by Iceland

Mr. President,

We are pleased to have this opportunity to engage with the Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar on this urgent matter.

The findings of the report of the Fact-Finding Mission are indeed shocking. The report indicates genocide and crimes against humanity may have been committed by Myanmar Security Forces during their campaign against the Rohingya people. As is always the case in crises and conflicts, women and children are among those suffering most.

We are alarmed by these findings, in particular we are dismayed that persecution of Rohingya people appears to be continuing to this day in Rakhine. It indicates that the Myanmar security forces are acting with complete impunity. Thus, my delegation fully supports the efforts of this body including the ongoing discussions on how we can ensure accountability including through trial in national and international courts, including possibly by the International Criminal Court. 

Mr. President

The report is based on hundreds of interviews with affected individuals. It is conclusive beyond reasonable doubt, identifying where specifically violations and/or crimes have been committed and where the principal responsibility lies. Indeed, the report names individuals who should be investigated and prosecuted.

In this context, the response of the Myanmar Government to the report of the Fact-Finding Mission is deeply disappointing. 

Iceland furthermore finds it abhorrent that the Government of Myanmar has arrested and prosecuted journalists involved in documenting some of the massacres which have occurred. We support the High Commissioner´s call that these individuals be immediately released. We also want to use this opportunity to commend Bangladesh for opening its doors to Rohingya fleeing the violence and persecution in Myanmar.

I thank you.


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