Hybrid court hangs in the balance UNHRC NO PRINCIPAL SL NOT A STUDENT – Mangala
Posted on September 18th, 2015

By Sulochana Ramiah mohan Courtesy Ceylon Today

The government has proposed a South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) model customized to Sri Lanka as a domestic mechanism to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) which urged Sri Lanka to create a ‘hybrid special court’ to address the alleged war crimes.

At the media brief yesterday, Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said “UNHRC is not the ‘school principal’ and Sri Lanka ‘her students’ to agree what is best for Sri Lanka but would sit and plan out what is best for Sri Lanka with the UNHRC”.
Calling it a consensual report between the government of Sri Lanka and the UNHRC, the Foreign Minister said, it’s in their hands to decide whether they want or not want a hybrid special Court to probe alleged human rights violation as mentioned in the UN report.
He said, having international lawyers, judges and prosecutors to probe war crimes, will be taken for discussion during the consultation process.

“Whether two foreign judges and three local judges or whatever, that would be decided by us. This mechanism is used at different level in different countries. So, we will discuss within our local officials and decide what is best and frame the process how to take it forward in January,” he asserted.
Foreign Minister Samaraweera added that the entire UN report that was published on 17 September will be put through a ‘consultation process’ beginning from second week of October after the UN Assembly is over.
He said once the consultation process ends by the end of January 2016, and there onwards within next 18 months they intend to complete the local probe.

When asked whether the UN Human Rights Commissioner Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein knows what Sri Lanka is willing to undertake as SA model, the Foreign Minister said, they have discussed how Colombo will address to their own local probe process.
The Foreign Minister further said the country would not need a UN panel of experts as per se, but will need UN technical assistance like in the case of forensic evidence where Sri Lanka has no expertise.
He opined that the word ‘hybrid special Courts’ came to be mentioned because there was no faith on the local judicial system.
He said it is this government that ‘avoided’ former President Mahinda Rajapaksa from ‘sitting on an electric chair’.
Foreign Minister Samaraweera added that during the Rajapaksa regime no sane man would say that the law and order and the judiciary was in place functioning independently and it was this new government that is strengthening the legal system under the 19A.

The minister reiterated that with consultation with all the stakeholders on the UN report will derive the final judgment how to implement it. It is then the final judgment on the war crime probe would bring about a credible strong judgment.
He said to make the local mechanism process a success there would be various institutions enacted and that would be addressing the hopes and aspirations of the people who visit those institutions. “It depends on how you do it,” he added.
He added that an immediate time frame for the local mechanism is after the consensual resolution is brought up in Geneva at its 30th session on 24 September and Sri Lanka would be taken up on the 30 September.

He said on the UN report it was unfair to ‘hang on the term ‘hybrid’ court. The report consists of 259 pages and he opined that it is because many expected a blood curdling report on human rights violations and they were disappointed.
Adding that the UN report was in fact was a well crafted sober report which has narratives of some of the human rights violations and war crimes and it is up to us to investigate and make sure the justice is doled out and it will not occur again.
He also called the report as being well balanced pointing out the LTTE’s atrocities. “I think this is a report which has been revealed with the best of intention,” he added.

He said many crimes are being dealt with and pointed out few examples such as Ekneligoda whose disappearance case has one more person to be questioned; Raviraj’s murder probe also will end soon and former Sunday Leader Editor Lasantha Wickramtunga’s murder trial will also be completed soon, the minster asserted.
What we know is the armed forces are disciplined, but who gave the orders. I am sure the Army had no intention of killing Ekneligoda he added.
“Whoever were behind these tasks of killing persons will be dealt with the law,” he added.

One Response to “Hybrid court hangs in the balance UNHRC NO PRINCIPAL SL NOT A STUDENT – Mangala”

  1. Charles Says:

    Ignorance is bliss. When you do not understand the ramifications involved in a matter and you depend on people who tell half the truth, you presume that there is nothing to worry about a report against the Sovereign state and make irrelevant statements side stepping the dan gers involved in the issue. It is like the king who believes that he is wearing an excellent dress because his dress makers told him so, but in reality he is only stark naked.

    A hybrid court proposed by a hybrid UN HR Commissioner is dangerous even to accept in part. It has to be thrown into the dust bin. It has no legal value as the witnesses to the supposed to be facts related are unknown and the names are deliberately kept secret for 22 years or so. The 3000 eye witness accounts may have been written in London by the Tamils of the LTTE front organisations. What is the guarantee they are true eye accounts ? UNHR Commissioner should have refused to accept it, instead of trying to impose it on us.

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