Adoption of Resolution on Situation of Human Rights of Rohingya Muslims and Other Minorities in Myanmar
Explanation of Position by the Delegation of the United States of America
As Delivered by Ambassador Michèle Taylor
Human Rights Council 50th Session
Thank you, Mr. President
The United States stands with the people of Myanmar, and supports calls for the voluntary, dignified, safe, and sustainable return of Rohingya refugees, who are predominantly Muslim, to their country, but only when conditions are safe for such a return. Unfortunately, conditions in Myanmar are not currently safe, and we do not support the immediate commencement of returns to Myanmar, as this resolution calls for. Instead, we call upon the military regime, which seized power in a coup d’état, to cease violence and to restore the path to democracy, and for all relevant actors to immediately work towards creating, as quickly as possible, safe conditions for Rohingya to return to Myanmar. We also call for greater urgency to address the root causes of violence and discrimination resulting in the Rohingya refugee crisis.
We underscore that this resolution, like all HRC resolutions, is nonbinding and does not create rights or obligations under international law. It does not change the current state of conventional or customary international law or the body of international law applicable to any particular situation. The United States does not necessarily understand references to “conflict,” “IHL,” or international humanitarian law terms of art in this resolution to mean that, as a matter of law, an armed conflict exists in a particular country or to supplant a State’s existing obligations under IHL.
With this understanding, we join consensus. I thank you.