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HRC51: Statement of Lithuania at the Item 8 General debate

Created: 2022.09.30 / Updated: 2022.09.30 19:20
30 September 2022, 51th Session of the UN Human Rights Council
Item 8: General debate on follow-up to and implementation of the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action 
Statement of the Republic of Lithuania

Thank you, Mr President,

Peace, security, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms – these are the concepts enshrined in the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action since 1993. However, we are still dealing with backlash and resistance to fulfil the commitment to protect every human right of every person.

It is even more difficult to achieve tangible results while we face armed conflicts and wars. Everyone in those affected countries suffers and is in need of protection, especially women, children, older persons, persons with disabilities and persons in vulnerable situations. We heard many times in this room that international community should respect the international order, defend principles of international law and international humanitarian law in order to prevent outbreaks of war and crimes against humanity. And yet again the geopolitical order, the entire rules-based international system is challenged by the brutal, unprovoked and unjustified Russian war against Ukraine. Lithuania condemns sham “referenda” in the occupied regions of Ukraine and will never recognise any Ukrainian territory as part of Russian Federation. Human rights of every person will remain endangered until the Russian Federation ends its illegal war of aggression and begins to respect its international commitments and general principles of international law.

Respect for human rights and principles of democracy are interlinked. However, the number of authoritarian regimes is growing. Democracy activists, human rights defenders, independent journalists and media workers, particularly women, face risks to their life and freedom. Global security architecture is crumbling and it is our common responsibility to protect democratic values and basic human rights. Therefore, Lithuania organizes the second high-level Forum on the Future of Democracy, which will take place in Vilnius, Lithuania, on 9 and 10 November, 2022. It will bring together representatives of Governments, international organizations and civil society to discuss ways to support and promote democracy and international peace.

I thank you.

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