Human Rights Council 52nd Session: General Debate on the Human Rights Situations that require the Council's attention - PR UN, WTO and other organisations Geneva

Human Rights Council:  52nd Session: Item 4 - General Debate on the Human Rights Situations that require the Council's attention | 23-03-2023

National statement delivered by Ambassador H.E. Paul Bekkers, Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Thank you Mr. President

The Kingdom of the Netherlands aligns itself with the EU statement.

The Netherlands remains gravely concerned about the worsening human rights situation in Afghanistan, especially for women and girls. The denial of women’s and girls’ rights may amount to gender persecution, a crime against humanity. We continue to urge the Taliban to respect all human rights for all without distinction.

The Netherlands urges China to end the human rights violations documented in the High Commissioner’s report on Xinjiang and the report by UN-experts on the forced assimilation of Tibetan children. The limitation of civil and political rights in Hong Kong remains worrisome.

We reiterate our deep concern about the human rights situation in Iran. The surge in executions is alarming and we renew our longstanding opposition to the death penalty. The Netherlands is also shocked by reports about large-scale poisoning of young girls at schools and calls for a thorough investigation.

The deportation and forcible transfer of Ukrainian children to the Russian Federation and to territories of Ukraine under Russian occupation respectively is particularly worrying to the Netherlands. We urge Russia to end its deliberate and systematic actions, which are a blatant violation of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

Furthermore, we remain concerned about the forced closure of prominent human rights organisations and the crackdown on media freedom in Russia. We strongly welcome the appointment of the special rapporteur this session.