Delivered on 13 March 2017

Delivered by Mr Jeffrey Salim Waheed, Minister and Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of Maldives

Mr President,

My delegation expresses concern over the findings in the report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

Mr President,

The Maldives notes the DPRK’s engagement at the Second Cycle of the Universal Peridoic Review, as well as its ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities this past December, increasing the number of core human rights treaties subscribed to by the DRPK administration to five. Continued engagement by their Government with the Human Rights Council and its mechanisms provides hope, though the refusal of the DPRK to engage substantively, especially with regards to the situation of human rights in the country, remains troubling. That the UN system is therefore unable to provide an adequate assessment of the situation in the country is evidence of the need for greater attention on this issue.

It is with concern that my delegation views the complete isolation of a Member State of the United Nations and its people from the international community. Extremist ideologies pose a threat to international peace and security, as surely as does the threat of the use of arms. We encourage the Government of DPRK to move forward with the rest of the world towards an international normative framework where no one is left behind.

The Maldives whole heartedly condemns systematic and gross violations of human rights, and is concered by reports of crimes against humanity being committed in the DPRK. The deprivation of liberty, use of torture, and widespread represession, evident in UN Reports to date, paint a stark picture of the reality on the ground. The future for both the people and the Government of the DPRK remains bleak, lest we as a community of nations come together in support of common solutions that moves the DPRK towards greater multilateral and bilateral engagement.

Thank you.