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New UN Special Rapporteur on Myanmar launches her first official country visit 

GENEVA (14 July 2014) – The new United Nations Special Rapporteur on Myanmar, Yanghee Lee, will undertake her first official visit to the country from 17 to 26 July 2014 to gather first-hand information on the current human rights situation in Myanmar.

The new independent expert appointed by the UN Human Rights Council to monitor, report and advise on the situation of human rights in Myanmar will visit Nay Pyi Taw, Yangon, Rakhine and Kachin states. Ms. Lee also intends to visit Mandalay following the recent outbreak of violence there. 

The Special Rapporteur, who visits the country at the invitation of the Government, looks forward to engaging constructively with a broad spectrum of stakeholders, including Government officials, political, religious and community leaders, civil society representatives, as well as victims of human rights violations and members of the international community during her visit. 

“A frank and open exchange of views will be vital to help me better understand the realities on the ground,” Ms. Lee said. “And it is my intention, as Special Rapporteur, to work closely with the Government and people of Myanmar, towards the promotion and protection of human rights in the country.”

The new Special Rapporteur served as member and chairperson of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (2003-2011). She is currently a professor at Sungkyunwan University, Seoul, and serves on the Advisory Committee of the National Human Rights Commission of Korea. Ms. Lee is the founding President of International Child Rights Center, and serves as Vice-chair of the National Unification Advisory Council.

The human rights expert will submit her first report following the country visit. It will be presented to the 69th session of the UN General Assembly in October.

A press conference will be held at the end of the Special Rapporteur’s visit. Details on time and venue will be announced during the course of the visit.

ENDS

Ms. Yanghee Lee (Republic of Korea) was appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council in June 2014, succeeding Mr. Tomás Ojea Quintana, who completed his six-year term on the mandate in May 2014. As Special Rapporteur, Ms. Lee is independent from any government or organization and serves in her individual capacity. Learn more, go to: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/SP/CountriesMandates/MM/Pages/SRMyanmar.aspx

UN Human Rights, country page – Myanmar: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/countries/AsiaRegion/Pages/MMIndex.aspx

For more information and media requests, please contact:
In Geneva: Ms. Azwa Petra, Human Rights Officer (+41 22 928 9103 / apetra@ohchr.org)
In Yangon (during the mission, 16 July p.m. to 26 July a.m.): U Aye Win, National Information Officer (+95 94 210 60343 / wina@un.org)
In Bangkok (27-28 July): Ms. Ann Syauta, Human Rights Officer (+66 98 969 7672 / syauta@un.org)

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts:
Xabier Celaya, UN Human Rights – Media Unit (+ 41 22 917 9383 / xcelaya@ohchr.org)  

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Check the Universal Human Rights Index: http://uhri.ohchr.org/en