Lithuania, Latvia and Poland speak out on human rights of migrants

June 24 saw the 50th session of the United Nations  Human Rights Council​ taking place in Geneva, Switzerland, and included an intervention from the Lithuanian representative on behalf of Lithuania, Latvia and Poland jointly, concerning the human rights of migrants.

It followed the presentation of a report titled "Human rights violations at international borders: trends, prevention and accountability," which included a section on the migrant crisis on the borders of Latvia, Lithuania and Poland created by the human trafficking efforts of the Lukashenko regime in Belarus.    

Excerpt from UN report "Human rights violations at international borders: trends, prevention and accountability"

"We thank the Special Rapporteur for his report and continued work. We fully recognize the importance of establishing a human rights-based approach to migration that assures the protection of migrants, especially those escaping conflict and persecution in their countries of origin," the joint statement begins.

"Since the start of unprovoked and unjustified Russian invasion of Ukraine, our countries have promptly granted temporary protection to all Ukrainian refugees, with particular focus on those in vulnerable situations, including women, children and elderly persons, suffering from Russian aggression.

"We note the concerns expressed in your report regarding policies of Lithuania, Poland, and Latvia. However, it is Belarusian authorities that organised a large-scale hybrid attack against the EU using migrants as a geopolitical tool. We made sure that our responsive actions are in full compliance with our international commitments.

"Mr. Special Rapporteur, in the report, you have mentioned that your official visit to Belarus was postponed, because of the lack of response from the Belarusian authorities. What efforts are currently being made to get access to Belarus? Has a new date of possible visit been set? Additionally, what could be done to prevent states from using migrants as weapons in the future?" it concludes.

The Human Rights Council holds its fiftieth regular session from 13 June to 8 July 2022 at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.

UNHRC report on border situation
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