Nordic Joint Statement
Delivered by Minister for Foreign Affairs of Denmark on the occasion of Arria formula meeting in United Nations Security Council
on the human rights situation in Belarus
8 October 2021
Members of the Security Council,
I deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic countries - Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and my own country, Denmark.
We welcome today’s opportunity to discuss the aggressive behaviour of the Belarusian authorities against their own citizens and neighbouring countries.
I would like to thank the briefers for their insightful and first-hand reports about the situation.
The Belarusian authorities have committed serious and unprecedented human rights violations since August last year.
We cannot stand idly by the acts of torture and other ill-treatment, including sexual and gender-based violence.
The Belarusian authorities must live up to the country’s international commitments and obligations to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms.
They must release all political prisoners and others arbitrarily detained.
The Belarusian authorities have rejected calls to investigate and prosecute the numerous reported cases of violence and torture committed by the authorities.
We call for accountability, an immediate end to repressions, and the release of all political prisoners.
Cases of torture must be investigated, and perpetrators must be brought to account.
We support international initiatives to hold perpetrators accountable, including through the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights examination on Belarus and the International Accountability Platform for Belarus.
The Lukashenko regime has sought to instrumentalise irregular third-country migration in an attempt to destabilise EU Member States.
We strongly condemn the Belarusian authorities’ instrumentalisation of migrants and refugees and the exploitation of their vulnerability for political purposes.
We commend the Belarusian civil society, journalists and media for their courageous efforts in documenting the brutality.
These are crucial contributions to the efforts aimed at restoring justice.
International solidarity with the people of Belarus is more important than ever.
We share their vision and hope of a democratic, independent, sovereign, prosperous and stable Belarus.
And we will continue to support their struggle for justice.