24th Special Session of the Human Rights Council Statement by Turkey

Mehmet Ferden ÇARIKÇI 17.12.2015

Mr. President,

Turkey remains deeply concerned about the escalation of violence in Burundi.

We are further concerned by ongoing violations and abuses of human rights in Burundi, including cases of arbitrary killings, allegations of torture and ill-treatment, harassment and intimidation of human rights defenders. We call upon the Government of Burundi to conduct impartial and independent investigations on these violations so that all perpetrators are brought to justice, with a view to fight impunity and ensure accountability. We also encourage the Burundian authorities to continue their cooperation with the OHCHR Country Office, which plays a crucial role in supporting national efforts to protect human rights and uphold the rule of law.

The humanitarian outlook in the country remains dire, with more than 220.000 Burundian refugees who had to flee towards neighbouring countries. Moreover, the security situation negatively affects the daily lives of ordinary people, especially concerning their rights to education and health.

A genuine and inclusive inter-Burundian dialogue with the participation of all concerned stakeholders is the only solution to prevent further polarization. Reflecting a spirit of compromise, this vital dialogue would no doubt serve as basis to a much-needed reliable political process, which will enlarge the democratic space throughout Burundi.

In this context, we support the concrete engagement by the international community, particularly by the UN, the East African Community and the African Union in calling for restraint and aiming to work constructively in order to safeguard the achievements of the Arusha Agreements. In a broader perspective, restoring trust among neighboring countries of the Great Lakes Region and confidence-building within the region are of utmost importance.

With this understanding, Turkey encourages all national stakeholders in Burundi to resolve their differences through dialogue in good faith, in order to restore the necessary conditions for long-term peace and stability, in respect of human rights and fundamental freedoms.

I thank you, Mr. President.


Sadık Arslan Ambassador

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