Today 22 February, Foreign Minister Eva-Maria Liimets made a video statement at the 46th session of the UN Human Rights Council.
She expressed support for the international organisations playing an increasingly active role in defending human rights around the world. “To maintain and secure international stability, the three pillars of the United Nations system – human rights, peace and security, and development – have to be increasingly integrated,” Minister Liimets said.
Estonia has also brought urgent human rights violations to the agenda of the UN Security Council. “As a member of the UN Security Council, Estonia considers conflict prevention an essential part of the Security Council’s activities. Human rights violations are an early warning of potential, more serious conflicts, which is why it is highly important for all countries to cooperate on preventing security threats,” Minister Liimets said.
In her statement, Minister Liimets stressed that any gender-based violence and violence targeting children was unacceptable. She also condemned the brutal attacks on peaceful protesters and representatives of independent media in Belarus. “Estonia continues to support holding perpetrators accountable and underlines the importance of the freedom of speech both offline and online,” the foreign minister said.
She also criticised the actions taken by the authorities of Russia against thousands of protesters who gathered in support of the detained opposition politician Alexei Navalny. “The brutal response of the authorities to the protesters who came to support Navalny follows years of tightening restrictions on and repressive actions against civil society, independent media, and the political opposition.”
In her statement, the foreign minister welcomed the reengagement of the United States with the UN Human Rights Council.
The minister also attended a high-level meeting of the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva under the auspices of the session of the Human Rights Council.
On 24 February, the foreign minister will attend a meeting of the Alliance for Multilateralism convened by the foreign ministers of France and Germany.
Estonian national statement in full: https://bit.ly/2P20Ijz
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia