National level Universal Periodic Review meeting held

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Vice President U Myint Swe delivers the opening speech at the coordination meeting on National level Universal Periodic Review – UPR in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday. Photo: MNA

The first coordination meeting of a national-level committee on implementing recommendations of Universal Periodic Review – UPR was held yesterday morning at the meeting hall of the Ministry of Home Affairs in Nay Pyi Taw. Vice President U Myint Swe, Chairman of UPR, delivered an opening speech at this meeting.
Present at the meeting were Vice Chairmen of the committee Union Ministers Lt-Gen Kyaw Swe, Dr. Win Myat Aye, U Kyaw Tin and Union Attorney-General U Tun Tun Oo, committee members Myanmar National Human Rights Commission Chairman U Win Mra, Deputy Ministers Maj-Gen Aung Thu, Rear Admiral Myint Nwe, Maj-Gen Than Htut, U Khin Maung Tin, U Aung Hla Tun, Dr. Daw Mya Lay Sein and U Sett Aung, Permanent Secretaries, Directors-General, Joint Secretary of Myanmar Women’s Affairs Federation, Secretary of the Myanmar Maternal and Child Welfare Association and officials.
In his opening speech, Vice President U Myint Swe said that the Universal Periodical Review (UPR) is a process which makes a periodic review of the human rights records and which carries out in accordance with the implementation of United Nations General Assembly resolution 65/251. Myanmar has submitted the first and the second UPRs to the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights – OHCHR in Geneva, Switzerland in 2011 and 2015 and which were under review by the UN Human Rights Council.
During the Second Cycle of UPR, Myanmar received 281 recommendations from 93 countries. Out of 281 recommendations, Myanmar accepted 166 recommendations.
With the aim of implementing these recommendations, a workshop was held on 9-10 August 2016, organized by the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission in Nay Pyi Taw. Similarly, another workshop was convened under the aegis of the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission (MNHRC) and the Lutheran World Federation (Myanmar) on 21 and 22 June 2018 in Nay Pyi Taw. Based on the results of this workshop, the MNHRC submitted the recommendations to the Office of the President; thereby the National-level committee on implementation of Universal Periodic Review (UPR) was formed with five functions and 25 members on October 19, 2018.
A preliminary meeting on National level Universal Periodic Review – UPR was held on 12 November 2018 and which was led by Deputy Minister for Home Affairs and officials. The meeting had designated and identified ministries and organizations that would be held accountable for carrying out the implementations process of 12 sectors. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs would be accountable for 41 issues to sign the international human rights treaties, the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission would be held accountable for 7 issues concerning its commission, the Ministry of International Cooperation would be held accountable for 4 issues to cooperate with UN Human Rights Mechanisms, the Office of the Union Attorney-General would be held accountable for 19 issues of reformation of democracy, peace, rule of law and human rights, the Ministry of Planning and Finance would be held accountable for 12 issues of economic development, the Ministry of Home Affairs would be held accountable for 10 issues of formation of good governance system and land confiscations, the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement would be held accountable for 15 issues of promoting gender equality and vulnerability together with 15 issues of discrimination, the Ministry of Education would be held accountable for 13 issues of health and education, the Ministry of Religious Affairs and Culture would be held accountable for 18 issues of interfaith,
freedom of expression and freedom of peaceful assembly, the Ministry of Labour,  Immigration and Population would be held accountable for 7 issues of National Scrutiny Cards, internal displacement and human trafficking, and the Office of the State Counsellor would be held accountable for 5 issues of ceasefire and national reconciliation. The UN Human Rights Council would undertake a review, for the third time, the situation of Myanmar’s human rights in 2020, and national report on implementing the second recommendation would be submitted by July, 2020, and arrangements would be made to submit the draft national report to the National level committee by December, 2019. Cooperation among the relevant work committees, ministries and organizations is needed in order to get a complete national report in time.

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The UPR process was a privilege for Myanmar to let the world know about the improvement of the human rights’ situation. As for the relevant work committees, ministries and organizations, efforts should be made to carry out the implementation. In order to show the improvement of human rights situation in Myanmar, inclusiveness should be emphasized to implement the process of national report. The attendees were urged to make suggestions and discussions openly regarding the difficulties they encounter in the work process.
Next the secretary of the Committee Maj-Gen Aung Thu explained about the UPR process, measurements of preliminary coordination meeting and on-going process.
Regarding the 166 recommendations of UPR, Union Minister for International Cooperation U Kyaw Tin explained about 41 issues of International Human Rights treaties and 4 issues to cooperate with UN Human Rights Mechanisms, Chairman of the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission U Win Mra explained about 7 issues concerning its commission, the Office of the Union Attorney-General U Tun Tun Oo explained about 19 issues of reformation of democracy, peace, rule of law and human rights, Deputy Minister for Planning and Finance U Sett Aung explained about 12 issues of economic development, Permanent Secretary for Ministry of Home Affairs U Tin Myint explained about 10 issues of formation of good governance system and land confiscations, Union Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement Dr. Win Myat Aye explained about 15 issues of promoting gender equality and vulnerability together with 15 issues of discrimination, Director-General of the Technical, Vocational Education and Training Department Dr. Aye Myint explained about 13 issues of health and education, Ministry of Religious Affairs and Culture Permanent Secretary U Tun Ohn explained about 18 issues of interfaith, freedom of expression and freedom of peaceful assembly, Ministry of Labour, Immigration and Population Deputy Director-General U Shein Win explained about 7 issues of National Scrutiny Cards, internal displacement and human trafficking, Deputy Minister for Office of the State Counsellor U Khin Maung Tin explained about 5 issues of ceasefire and national reconciliation.
Following this, Union Ministers Lt-Gen Kyaw Swe, Union Minister for International Cooperation U Kyaw Tin, Chairman of the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission U Win Mra, Deputy Minister for Defence Rear Admiral Myint Nwe, Deputy Minister for Border Affairs Maj-Gen Than Htut, Deputy Minister for Office of the State Counsellor U Khin Maung Tin, Deputy Minister for Information U Aung Hla Tun, Deputy Minister for Health and Sports Dr. Daw Mya Lay Sein, Ministry of Home Affairs Permanent Secretary U Tin Myint and Director-General U Zaw Htay from the Office of the State Counsellor clarified on the process of the Universal Periodic Review – UPR. The meeting came to a close after a closing speech by the Vice President.

— MNA
(Translated by Win Ko Ko Aung)

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