I would like to thank you for convening this important Arria-formula meeting, and also thank the briefers for their insights.
I would like to offer our deep condolences and sympathies to all those who lost lives, loved ones and livelihood in the havoc wreaked by Cyclone Mocha. We have seen many unconfirmed reports about the scale of devastation, and are deeply worried about the further damage to the people of Myanmar. We must not forget the fact that the cyclone hit a country where its regime is not working for the will of most of its people.
Japan remains deeply concerned by the deteriorating situation in Myanmar. We need to follow up the successful adoption of the important UN Security Council Resolution 2669 in December last year, demanding the immediate end to all forms of violence and urging the Myanmar military to immediately release all arbitrarily detained prisoners and calling for democratic institutions and processes to be upheld. The April 11 airstrike by the Myanmar military in the Sagaing region was particularly condemnable in this context. Japan strongly urges the Myanmar military to work faithfully towards a peaceful solution of the situation acceptable to the people of Myanmar and to implement the Five Point Consensus, which it accepted.
We must reiterate our full support for ASEAN’s central role and its efforts. Japan provided approximately 5.3 million US dollars of humanitarian aid through AHA Centre, and Japan associates itself with the condemnation of the recent attack on the convoy in Shan State and calls for full, safe and unhindered humanitarian access.
The Council must come together in expressing our concern about the deteriorating security, humanitarian, human rights and political situation in Myanmar, and express solidarity with its people. Japan has thus provided a total of more than 108 million US dollars in humanitarian assistance since the coup d'état, through international organizations and NGOs etc., directly benefiting the people of Myanmar.
The role of immediate neighbors is also important. Japan highly commends the Government of Bangladesh for generously receiving Rohingya refugees. We stress the need to create conditions for the voluntary, safe, dignified, and sustainable return of all displaced persons. We will continue to support Bangladesh, just as we have provided assistance of approximately 200 million US dollars to date.
Japan will continue to work closely with the international community, including ASEAN. We fully support the efforts by the ASEAN’s Chair, Indonesia, and encourage its close coordination with the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General, Ms. Noeleen Heyzer to respond to the will of the people of Myanmar. We firmly believe that the Council should remain regularly seized on the situation in Myanmar.
It is our sincere hope that the people of Myanmar and the international community, will be united in overcoming the deteriorating situation including the tragedy of Cyclone Mocha.
I thank you.