Statement on the High Commissioner’s Work to Promote and Protect Human Rights

Item 2 General Debate 

Statement by the Delegation of the United States of America 

UN Human Rights Council – 46th Session Geneva, February 26, 2021 

As Delivered by Daniel Kronenfeld

Thank you. We welcome the High Commissioner’s work to promote and protect human rights around the world. We support her continued focus on the deteriorating human rights situations in Belarus, Burundi, China, the DPRK, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Iran, Nicaragua, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Venezuela, and Yemen, among others. I assure you we will have more to say on several of these country situations throughout the Council session.

We wish to take this opportunity now, however, to respond to some of the High Commissioner’s oral updates. We reiterate our commitment to working with the governments of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras to protect human rights, strengthen democratic institutions, and combat corruption and impunity. In Honduras, we are particularly concerned with increased reports of extrajudicial killings of environmental defenders and journalists.

We echo the High Commissioner’s call on authorities in Colombia to do more to end violence against social leaders, human rights defenders, and ex-combatants and to protect all its citizens, especially its most vulnerable, including indigenous groups, members of racial and ethnic minority communities, and those dwelling in rural areas where the government’s reach is limited.