Message to all staff on International Human Rights Day 2019 from the Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator, Ola Almgren

It is now two months since my arrival in Myanmar and I thank you for the warm collegiality you have shown me at the beginning of my time here.

Dear Colleagues,

It is now two months since my arrival in Myanmar and I thank you for the warm collegiality you have shown me at the beginning of my time here.

I take this opportunity, on International Human Rights Day 2019, to reach out to you with some thoughts on who we are and what we do.

We are fully committed to supporting Myanmar on its path to democracy and peace, to working with Myanmar in achieving its development goals, to delivering humanitarian assistance to people affected by conflict and natural disasters across the country, to support its peace processes, and to speaking out for the needs and rights of all people in Myanmar, especially those who are left the furthest behind. 

In serving the people of Myanmar, we must always remember the purpose and principles of the UN, as stated in its Charter and in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  Human Rights is central to the very existence of the United Nations and crosscuts all the work we do.  In his statement on the International Human Rights Day this year, the Secretary-General says:

“Every single person is entitled to all rights: civil, political, economic, social and cultural. Regardless of where they live. Regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, social origin, gender, sexual orientation, political or other opinion, disability or income, or any other status.”

This defines our mandate and we should always strive to uphold it.

For International Human Rights Day this year, we have produced a video entitled, “The Earth we will inherit, the Myanmar we will inherit.”  In keeping with this year’s global theme, “Youth Standing Up for Human Rights”, five young activists who work on LGBT, social harmony, freedom of expression, refugees and IDPs, and environmental issues share their views. They express their vision for future generations in Myanmar and all over the world, and the legacy that they would like to receive and to leave. Please watch it, reflect on its messages, and share it.

The UN works with the people and the Government of Myanmar on its journey to a better future in which human rights are promoted and protected.  We all have an important contribution to make as we engage with national and international partners on this journey.  I look forward to your support and out continued dialogue in this regard.

Thank you, Kya zuu tin ba deh.

Speech by
Author
Ola Almgren
UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator
RCO
UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Myanmar
UN entities involved in this initiative
UN
United Nations