Item 4 Interactive Dialogue on Belarus
Statement by the United States of America
Human Rights Council, 47th Session
Geneva, July 5, 2021
As Delivered by Chargé d’Affaires Ben Moeling
The United States thanks the Special Rapporteur for her latest report, cataloging the Lukashenka regime’s wave of repression against the people of Belarus. Since the fraudulent 2020 presidential election, the regime has detained and prosecuted thousands of innocent people on politically motivated charges, solely for exercising their human rights and fundamental freedoms. Today Belarusian authorities hold over 500 political prisoners.
The regime’s repression knows no bounds, as the world saw May 23 when it forcibly diverted an international commercial airliner for the apparent purpose of detaining a Belarusian journalist, endangering the safety of passengers and crew.
In a sickening display, Belarusian authorities two weeks later paraded the journalist before an assembled news conference where, under obvious duress, he was made to recant his abuse.
Such contempt for international norms cannot go unanswered. That is why the United States joined the EU, Canada and UK in imposing new sanctions on June 21 and will consider further actions as necessary.
Madame Special Rapporteur, what steps can the international community take to hold Belarusian human rights violators accountable for their egregious abuses?