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Intervention by Estonia at the UN Human Rights Council 36th Session under Item 2 General Debate


UN Human Rights Council 36th Session



Intervention by ESTONIA


Item 2 – General Debate

Geneva, 12th September 2017

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Mr President,

Distinguished High Commissioner,


Estonia fully aligns itself with the statement made by the European Union.


We would like to thank the High Commissioner and his Office for bringing to our attention the most serious human rights violations in far too many countries. We agree with the High Commissioner that the fight against drugs, terrorism or violent extremism should not come at the expense of human rights, nor should it be used as a pretence for suffocating civil society space. Additional focus by this Council should be granted to the prevention of and prompt response to human rights emergencies. It is also paramount that human rights defenders and civil society organisations can engage with the Council without the fear and threat of reprisals. We welcome initiatives in the Council this session to further strengthen these aims.


In order to uphold the credibility of the Council, all States, including Council members, need to do a far better job to uphold the highest standards in the promotion and protection of human rights and to cooperate fully with the Council and its mechanisms. We also agree with the High Commissioner - we as States need to become more consistent in our human rights commitments in our internal and external activities.


Mr High Commissioner,

Far too many human rights violations are committed in places that are so-called grey zones in terms of accountability, out of the physical reach of observing eyes. We would like to ask whether there have been any developments concerning access by OHCHR or other international observers to the occupied and illegally annexed territories of Ukraine, and regions of Georgia to monitor the human rights situation?


Thank you.


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