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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

UN Seeks to Move Forward On Accountability Issues in Sri Lanka

Last week, at the Human Rights Council, the UN High Commissioner, Navi Pillay, during her presentation of her annual report, repeated her call for an independent investigation into war crimes allegations in Sri Lanka. "I am convinced that Sri Lanka should undertake a full reckoning of the grave violations committed by all sides during the war, and that the international community can be helpful in this regard". (Read more here.)

Sri Lanka's president, however, has officially rejected the United Nations plan to appoint a panel of experts to look into allegations of human rights abuses during the nation's civil war. According to The New York Times, in a phone conversation on Friday evening, President Mahinda Rajapaksa told the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, that such a step was "totally uncalled for and unwarranted".

In New York, Mr. Ban's spokesman, Martin Nesirky, confirmed that the Secretary General had told Mr. Rajapaksa that he intended to form a panel to "advise him on the way forward on accountability issues related to Sri Lanka". 

I suppose we will see what happens! I will report on any further developments. Stay tuned!


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