Netherlands and France For UN Commission in Burma

Two latest countries to join the call for a UN Commission of Inquiry on crimes against humanity in Burma are Netherlands and France. This is a major development considering France is one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and we have already garnered the support of two other permanent members – the United States and the United Kingdom.

The Dutch government expressed its support for this critical UN action on Burma on September 21, 2010, on the same day the New Zealand government announced its endorsement publicly. According to a news report from Mizzima, “The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs has stated that its minister, Maxime Verhagen, was ‘indeed supportive of calls for a UN commission of inquiry on human rights violations in Burma’.

Jetty Kouwen, a senior policy officer at the Ministry’s Southeast Asia and Oceania Department, confirmed that the Netherlands “will work closely with all other partners, within the EU and outside” to advance the cause of an international inquiry.

During the latest Human Rights Council meeting session, Monsieur Jean-Baptiste Mattei, French Ambassador to the UN, made the following statement on Burma: “In Burma, 1,200 prisoners were still not liberated. Human rights were still systematically violated and France expressed its support for the Special Rapporteur’s recommendation to establish an international commission of inquiry.”

There are currently 10 countries on board, speaking with one voice to call for the establishment of a UN Commission of Inquiry on crimes against humanity in Burma. They are Australia, United Kingdom, United States, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, New Zealand, Netherlands, Canada, and France.

Félicitation à tous!

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