The State Department recently released its 2021 Congressional Report Pursuant to the Elie Wiesel Genocide and Atrocities Prevention Act. It “serves as a reminder that while we are making progress on preventing. . .genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes, we still have much more work to do,” said Acting Assistant Secretary for Conflict and Stabilization Operations Robert Faucher.
This year’s report highlights several countries where atrocities have occurred in recent years, and thus are at risk of further atrocities, said Acting Assistant Secretary Faucher:
“For example, the report draws attention to Xinjiang, where the People’s Republic of China has committed and continues to commit genocide and crimes against humanity, against Uyghurs, who are predominantly Muslim, and members of other ethnic and religious minority groups.”
The genocide report also draws attention to the heinous acts of sexual violence and gross human rights violations that have been reported in Tigray, Ethiopia, including indiscriminate attacks against civilians, medical personnel, and humanitarian workers.
The report calls attention to the brutal crackdown on peaceful protestors and human rights defenders in Burma by the military regime. Many among the junta are responsible for ethnic cleansing against the predominantly Muslim Rohingya, and appalling violence against other ethnic and religious minorities.
“With the submission of this report, the United States reaffirms that atrocity prevention must remain at the forefront of international peace and security efforts,” said Acting Assistant Secretary Faucher:
“Atrocity crimes pose some of the gravest threats to the rules-based international order that has helped bring peace and prosperity for more than seven decades.”
Prevention mechanisms include the White House-led Atrocity Early Warning Task Force, which coordinates a whole-of-government approach to prevent, mitigate, and respond to atrocities.The United States has trained thousands of diplomatic, development, and defense professionals to do the crucial work of prevention. Satellite imagery is used to give early warning of potential violence. And life-saving aid is sent to human rights defenders and civil society leaders threatened by and in danger from repressive regimes.
“These steps taken together move us one step closer to ‘never again,’” said Acting Assistant Secretary Faucher.
The United States is committed to reducing the risk of future atrocities, and, with persistent determination, create conditions for a more peaceful and prosperous world.