Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Switzerland, Liechtenstein


UN Human Rights Council
Special Session on Human Rights Violations by ISIL in Iraq

Statement by Australia
1 September 2014

The latest attacks by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and associated groups have further underscored the serious threat they pose, and the need for a concerted international effort to counter them and their horrific crimes.

ISIL’s global aspirations represent a danger to international security beyond its brutal and ongoing attacks in Iraq and Syria.

Reports of ISIL’s actions against civilians, security personnel and vital infrastructure in Iraq have shocked the world. Its systematic attacks on ethnic and religious minorities, including the murder and kidnapping of members of the Yazidi community, and the targeting and violent repression of Iraqi Christians, are deeply concerning.

This persecution is unacceptable and Australia condemns these attacks in the strongest terms. Such barbaric actions require a comprehensive investigation, to be brought fully to the attention of the international community. Those responsible for serious crimes must be held to account.

These imperatives would be served by granting a mandate to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to examine, and report on, the extent and character of all human rights abuses perpetrated in this conflict.

We urge the Council to ensure these unconscionable crimes, and the human suffering they have produced, are documented in order that justice may be sought on behalf of all the many victims.