The crisis in Myanmar calls for sustained international attention

This morning, the UN Security Council held an open briefing on the situation in Myanmar. At the first open meeting on Myanmar since February 2019, Slovenia called for the protection of civilians, especially women and children, and for the full respect of international humanitarian law and international human rights law.

In Myanmar, more than three years have passed since the military overturned the democratically elected Government and detained its leaders. Today, the security situation is deeply alarming and is further deteriorating. The conflict has expanded throughout the country and intensified since November 2023, including in Rakhine State.  

As mentioned by one of the briefers, Assistant Secretary-General Khiari, “the expansion of armed conflict throughout the country has deprived communities of basic needs and access to essential services, and has had a devastating impact on human rights and fundamental freedoms.”

In her statement, the Deputy Permanent Representative of Slovenia echoed that “three years of military rule have pushed Myanmar into deep crisis, threatening not only its own stability and multiethnic character, but also the stability of the region.” Slovenia condemns the military coup and all forms of violence, including sexual and gender-based violence.

At today’s briefing, Slovenia made three key remarks. Firstly, it welcomed the central role of ASEAN in facilitating a solution to this conflict and ASEAN’s efforts to implement the Five-Point Consensus on Myanmar. At the same time, it underlined that the current situation in Myanmar merits regular discussions in the Security Council.

Secondly, Slovenia addressed the continued worsening of the humanitarian situation in the country. As stated by the representative of OCHA, across Myanmar, the humanitarian community estimates that around 18.6 million people will need humanitarian aid in 2024. Hunger is mounting and children are bearing the brunt of the crisis.

A child looks after his younger sibling in Myanmar
Children pay the highest price in this conflict / Author: World Bank/Tom Cheatham

“We condemn all deliberate obstructions to humanitarian assistance, including the military-imposed communications and movement restrictions and intimidations of humanitarian workers,” stressed the Deputy Permanent Representative while calling on all parties to the conflict to fully respect their obligations under international humanitarian law.

Thirdly, Slovenia strongly condemned the military’s indiscriminate violence against the civilian population, especially women and children. We are concerned by the compulsory military service law and its forced conscription without any appeal process, as well as by the continued recruitment of children.

Slovenia calls for compliance with the Council’s resolution 2669 and the path towards a democratic transition with a return to civilian rule.

Read the full statement here.

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