Panel Discussion: Using Sport and the Olympic Ideal to Promote Human Rights for All, Including Persons with Disabilities

Ambassador Harper: The United States Government has long been committed to fostering the positive influence sports can have in advancing human rights, international labor standards, educational and cultural exchange, and equality for all.

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U.S. Statement at the HRC Item 9 General Debate

The United States firmly believes that discrimination in all its forms, including racial discrimination, impedes the full enjoyment of human rights. But discriminatory laws and practices grounded in racism do not impact all individuals in exactly the same way. For women of color, for example, racial discrimination can have a compounding effect on a range of concerns, including participation and protection in the workplace.

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U.S. Fully Committed to Furthering the Rights of Minority Women

The United States is fully committed to furthering the rights of minority women and eliminating societal barriers that impede full enjoyment of their human rights. The U.S. government places great importance on women’s issues in general and has worked to elevate women’s status in the United States.

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Tragedy of Orlando Should Also be a Call to Action to End Violence and Discrimination Against LGBTI Persons

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We must live up to the Universal Declaration’s opening line that all persons are born free and equal. No person can or should be excluded from this assertion. Orlando should remind us of that.

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Item 5: Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (EMRIP) Review

The United States welcomes OHCHR’s report, which outlines reforms proposed by states, experts, indigenous peoples, and other civil society actors. The report identifies several areas of convergence from which we can draw in the coming months.

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Item 4: General Debate on Human Rights Situations Requiring Council Attention

The United States remains deeply concerned about the human rights situations in Syria, Burundi, South Sudan, DPRK, and Russia, which we address in more detail elsewhere during this session.

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Enhanced Interactive Dialogue on South Sudan

The United States believes there is a pressing need for justice and accountability in South Sudan. We fully support the peace agreement’s provision for the Hybrid Court for South Sudan, to be established by the African Union, as well as the Commission for Truth, Reconciliation, and Healing.

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HRC32: Interactive Dialogue with Special Rapporteur on Eritrea

The United States recognizes that the mechanisms of the HRC, including the Special Rapporteur, are important tools for the international community to strengthen its engagement with Eritrea. We call on the Government of Eritrea to grant access to the Special Rapporteur and urge the government to consider ways that working with the Special Rapporteur could improve the human rights situation in Eritrea.

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Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights Situation in Belarus

We continue to have significant concerns regarding the human rights situation in Belarus. The government continues to impose restrictions on opposition parties, civil society, and independent media. The government also continues to restrict the right to peaceful freedom of assembly by requiring permission to organize an event, yet routinely denying this permission, and sentencing those who participate in unsanctioned peaceful rallies to pay large fines.

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U.S. Welcomes the On-Going Critical Work of the Commission of Inquiry on Syria

Ambassador Harper: “We reiterate the many calls from UN bodies for the Syrian government to cease its egregious abuses against prisoners and disappeared persons, allow for immediate unfettered access to all detainees, provide a list of detention facilities, allow for medical services for all detainees, and release arbitrarily detained persons, including women, and children.”

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