Bracing for UN political onslaught :SL HAS THE RIGHT STUFF Pillay has failed to see true picture :
Posted on February 24th, 2013

Chamikara WEERASINGHE

Irrigation and Water Resources Management Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva yesterday said Sri Lanka is geared to face the full brunt of UN politics in the coming weeks. “One must not forget that the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is a highly politicised body. The Sri Lankan delegation participating in UNHRC review sessions in Geneva, that starts this week, may have to face the music of UN politics in the Council,” he said.

Minister de Silva said this in reply when asked on Sri Lanka’s chances of being able to defend itself in case of another US-sponsored resolution against Sri Lanka at the upcoming UNHRC sessions.

A team of US State Department officials declared that they would bring a procedural resolution against Sri Lanka at the forthcoming Council sessions. The minister said the President’s Special Envoy on Human Rights, Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe, who has served in that capacity for half a decade, and heads the team of high profile officials from the External Affairs Ministry and

Attorney General’s Department appointed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa to participate in this year’s UNHRC sessions in Geneva, will be able to present Sri Lanka’s case at the Council.

“If the Council is going to take up matters relating to Sri Lanka’s performance on post -war reconciliation, we have enough information, facts and figures to present before the Council a success story , which no other country has achieved in such a short period following a war,” he said. “This was a war against terror that lasted for over 30 years. The government defeated the most dangerous, ruthless and internationally banned terrorist organisation in the world, the LTTE. The Sri Lankan government has removed a global threat. It needs international support for its domestic process of post-war development, reconciliation and healing,” de Silva said.

“We do not know what sort of a resolution the United States is going to present this time around , but we will be able to present relevant facts and figures about our progress in all departments of post-war reconciliation and Human Rights,” he said.

Sri Lanka extended an open invitation to the world to “Come and See” the situation in Sri Lanka. It is sad to note that United Nations Human Rights High Commissioner Navaneetham Pillay has not visited Sri Lanka to obtain a first hand experience on Sri Lanka’s progress on national reconciliation, the minister said.

“She could have come at any time to the country. The invitation has been with her from 2011. However, she did not visit the country. Some of her officials did. Even I met some of them. They were able to get a first hand experience on the progress,” he said.

On being pointed out that Pillay expressed her concern about a recent shooting incident in the country where a journalist suffered a gunshot injury and questioned about Sri Lanka’s independence of judiciary over the issue of the impeachment of former Chief Justice Dr Shirani Bandaranayake, Minister Silva said: ” The government of Sri Lanka has denied her criticism because she overreached her mandate as the UNHR Commissioner in these matters and interfered with Constitutional governance of Sri Lanka.”

“Officials in our foreign missions in Geneva and the External Affairs Ministry explained the government’s stand on these matters to UNHR Commissioner Pillay,” he said.

Asked about NGOs, members of the Tamil National Alliance and the pro – LTTE Tamil diaspora set to raise allegations against Sri Lanka at the UNHRC sessions, he said: ” It is a thing that has been going on for many years. We are not going to take what they might come out with that seriously. We are concerned about presenting the true picture of Sri Lanka and the progress it achieved as a country in establishing peace, good governance, Human Rights and democracy to all its citizens.”

One Response to “Bracing for UN political onslaught :SL HAS THE RIGHT STUFF Pillay has failed to see true picture :”

  1. Ratanapala Says:

    Sri Lanka should leave aside diplomatic niceties and point fingers at other nations – US. Britain, Canada, other western countries and India –

    We have to point out how US handled similar situations in the past. Victims of hurricane Andrew, Katrina and Sandy in the US are still not adequately dealt with – Drone killing of civilians is an everyday happening.

    Sri Lanka should point out that LLRC recommendations are only a set of recommendations by a panel of “learned people” and only those that are approved by the Sri Lanka for implementation will be implemented

    Sri Lanka should point out that peace that is prevailing in Sri Lanka is certainly going to be jeopardised if devolution of power is implemented in the way of the 13th Amendment or the way the Racist Tamils would want it. They have to be told that it would be something akin to “Partition of India” in Sri Lanka’s context if power is devolved in anyway recognising the legitimacy of Tamil land in Sri Lanka. A mono ethnic Eelam and a multi-ethnic Sri Lanka ( the balance) is a bomb waiting to explode.

    The youth of our country and their parents did not make the supreme sacrifice of fighting a terrorist war to its final conclusion for Sri Lanka as we know to be bartered away by politicians over a table!

    This time around Sri Lankan delegation must make the country proud and leave it.

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