U.S. Statement as delivered by Jason Mack
Human Rights Council 36th Session
Geneva, September 29, 2017
Thank you, Mr. President.
We regret that the resolution just adopted without a request from the Secretary-General to provide an oral update to the Council, followed by an interactive dialogue, at the Council’s 38th session as was originally requested in the tabled resolution, nor for the High Commissioner to provide an oral update to the Council, followed by an interactive dialogue, at the Council’s 37th session as was our oral amendment. Given the deteriorating human rights situation in Cambodia, such attention by the Council is merited before the national election to be held in July 2018.
We are gravely concerned about the worsening human rights situation in Cambodia, including the crackdown on opposition parties, independent media, and civil society. The politically-motivated arrest and detention of opposition leader Kem Sokha, the arbitrary use of registration and tax regulations to intimidate, shut down, or expel civil society groups and independent media outlets, as reflected in the abrupt closures of the Cambodia Daily and Radio Free Asia, and the expulsion of the National Democratic Institute have all underscored the need for continued attention by the Council. It is critical that the Council directly address these developments and the need for Cambodia to cease these actions in order to enable credible national elections in 2018.