The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General António Guterres:
The Secretary-General will follow the upcoming general elections in Myanmar on 8 November. He notes that the holding of peaceful, orderly and credible elections is an important opportunity to help advance inclusive sustainable development, humanitarian action, human rights and democratic reforms, including civilian control over the military. He hopes they will also help pave the way for refugee returns in safety and dignity.
The Secretary-General renews his appeal for a ceasefire across the country to allow all to focus on combatting the COVID-19 pandemic. He remains concerned about armed conflict in many areas of Myanmar, especially the intensifying clashes in Rakhine and Chin States, which continue to take a heavy toll on vulnerable civilians.
The Secretary-General urges all parties to the armed conflict to respect their obligations under international humanitarian law and to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure. Unimpeded humanitarian access for the United Nations and its partners is crucial.
At this critical juncture for the people of Myanmar, the Secretary-General reaffirms the support of the United Nations in their pursuit of lives in dignity and peace.