GL: Govt. in a soup of its own making Foreign judges in accountability process:
Posted on June 19th, 2016

Courtesy The Island

Former External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris yesterday said that the government found itself in the current predicament owing to its irresponsible action.

Prof. Peiris said: “They have solemnly committed themselves to binding agreements at the Human Rights Council in Geneva without giving any thought to the consequences. The sequence of events is really unbelievable.

“The resolution which the government of Sri Lanka co-sponsored in October last year states that ‘it takes note with appreciation’ of the report High Commissioner for Human Rights on Sri Lanka. We wonder whether the government studied this report at all.

“The report states that “there are reasonable grounds to believe that the Sri Lankan security forces were implicated in unlawful killings carried out in widespread manner against civilians.”

“The report further states that these are “longstanding practices of arbitrary arrests and detention by government security forces.”

“The report states that there are “reasonable grounds to believe that Sri Lankan authorities have, in a widespread and systematic manner, deprived a considerable number of victims of their liberty and then refuse to acknowledge the deprivation of liberty or concealed the fate and whereabouts of the disappeared persons.”

“The report also states that there was “brutal use of torture by the Sri Lankan security forces.”

Prof. Peiris said: “This is the report which the Sri Lankan government noted with appreciation and called upon all other nations to support.”

The 47-member Geneva-based United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) unanimously adopted the resolution on Oct. 1, 2015.

UNHRC will receive an oral report on Sri Lanka as regards the progress made since the passage of the resolution ten months ago.

Responding to another query, Prof. Peiris said: “The resolution which is a Sri Lankan resolution because it was co-sponsored by Sri Lanka advocates to try war crimes through the setting up of a judicial mechanism with the participation of Commonwealth and other foreign judges, defence lawyers as well as authorized prosecutors and investigators.”

Referring to repeated assurances given by President Maithripala Sisisena and Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe in respect of non-inclusion of foreign judges in the proposed war crimes court, Prof. Peiris said that he couldn’t understand how the government now could feign ignorance of its own resolution and wanted the public to believe that the new administration advocated nothing of the sort.

Prof. Peiris pointed out that Jaffna District MP M.A. Sumanthiran on behalf of the TNA had reminded both the government and the US of having reached an understanding in respect of foreign judges before the passage of the resolution. The former law professor said that the government hadn’t disputed MP Sumanthiran’s declaration made at a Congressional briefing on June 14. (SF)

2 Responses to “GL: Govt. in a soup of its own making Foreign judges in accountability process:”

  1. Fran Diaz Says:

    G.L. Pieris is quite correct.
    The Yahap people have agreed to a lop sided and inaccurate UNHRC Report !

    Also,
    * LTTE Atrocities of nearly 30 yrs left out from the UNHRC Report !!
    * That over 300,000 Tamil civilians suffering and held as a Human Shield by the LTTE were rescued at high cost to Lanka lives, is left out of the UNHRC Report too.

    What a travesty of Justice for the People of Lanka, including even the ordinary Tamils of Lanka !
    The Vadukoddai Resolution (1976) sponsors have got clean away, haven’t they ?

    Justice weeps and the Law is made “into an Ass” too under present day Yahap leaders in Lanka.
    At least now, at this late stage, Yahap must correct their absurdities of the past and tell the whole truth to the world.

  2. vyasan Says:

    The people in the government, including the president and prime minister, had no alternative but to support the UNHRC resolution brought by the West in return for the favour they (western powers) did for them to gain to power. What more to say about those self-centered politicians who only cared about themselves getting to power!

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