Statement on International Jurisdiction

Announcement No . 2/2023

27 January 2023

1. The Ministry of Human Rights (MOHR) of the National Unity Government welcomes the growing number of criminal cases around the world brought against members of Myanmar’s failed military junta under the exercise of universal jurisdiction.

2. Universal jurisdiction allows nationals courts to prosecute atrocity crimes, such as crimes against humanity and war crimes, committed on foreign soil by foreign nationals. In the case of Myanmar, this enables countries with universal jurisdiction to use their courts to bring junta members to justice, including for their atrocity crimes against the Rohingya.

3. An ethnically diverse group of survivors and witnesses supported by Fortify Rights recently requested German authorities to open an investigation into military atrocity crimes in Myanmar, including genocide against the Rohingya as well as subsequent crimes committed by the junta since its failed coup. The National Unity Government urges German authorities to act on this request.

4. The Myanmar Accountability Project (MAP) has also launched a case in Turkey accusing themilitary junta of crimes against humanity including torture. MAP is also supporting legal proceedingsin Indonesia aimed at opening the possibility of trials there under the universal jurisdiction, and it willsoon announce legal action against the illegal junta in the Philippines.

5. Furthermore, Argentine courts have accepted a case brought by the Burmese Rohingya Organization UK (BROUK) against the Myanmar security forces for genocide against the Rohingya people.

6. In pledging its support for these efforts, the National Unity Government extends its deep appreciation to all associated national authorities and rights groups for their commitment to justice andaccountability in Myanmar.

7. We call upon all United Nations member states to extend similar support to accountability efforts,particularly those that exercise universal jurisdiction.

8. Myanmar is experiencing a tidal wave of criminal violence and atrocities at a level and scale not seen in the region since Pol Pot unleashed the Khmer Rouge’s reign of terror on Cambodia in the 1970s.

9. The people of Myanmar look to international courts and accountability mechanisms for support in ending the impunity, in holding perpetrators to account, and in delivering justice to victims and their families. The gravity of situation in Myanmar demands action now.

Ministry of Human Rights

National Unity Government