United States Mission to the United Nations
Office of Press and Public Diplomacy
For Immediate Release
August 23, 2023
Statement by Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield on the Situation in Burma
The United States is pleased to join 12 other UN Security Council members today to condemn the Burma military regime’s ongoing human rights abuses against the people of Burma, to call for the full implementation of Security Council Resolution 2669, and to underline our commitment to use all tools at the Security Council’s disposal to support ASEAN’s efforts to find a peaceful solution to the crisis. We thank the United Kingdom for its continued leadership as penholder on the Burma file and for coordinating today’s joint statement.
The latest report on Burma from the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights concludes that the military regime has persistently targeted civilians through air strikes and the razing of populated areas. Actions such as these have resulted in mass displacements of over 1.6 million people since the regime seized power more than two years ago. The Human Rights Council-mandated Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar’s recent report states that there is strong evidence that the Burma military and its affiliate militias have committed war crimes with increasing frequency and brazenness – including indiscriminate or disproportionate attacks on civilians by aerial bombing.
This month, we recognize the sixth anniversary of the start of a campaign of genocide, crimes against humanity, and ethnic cleansing committed against Rohingya in northern Rakhine State. We cannot forget the military regime’s atrocities against Rohingya, which included mass killings, the torching of entire villages and the forced displacement of hundreds of thousands fleeing into Bangladesh.
The regime’s horrific atrocities must stop. Given the Burmese military regime’s intransigence and continued human rights abuses, it is time for the Security Council to act beyond Resolution 2669.
The United States has been clear: Human rights will be at the forefront of our foreign policy – and of our presidency of the Security Council for the month of August – and the human rights situation in Burma is an issue that deserves the Council’s full attention. We stand in solidarity with the people of Burma as they call for a return to peace, democratic governance, and the rule of law.