UN rights chief backs delay for SL war crimes report

16 February 2015 03:04 pm - 15     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Sri Lanka's bid to postpone publication of a United Nations report into alleged war crimes has won the backing of U.N. human rights chief Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein, according to a letter seen by Reuters on Monday.


Sri Lanka's new government had asked for a delay of several months to give it time to establish a new judicial mechanism to deal with the allegations of war crimes committed during the country's civil war.


In a letter to the president of the U.N. Human Rights Council, which set up the investigation in March last year, Zeid recommended delaying publication from next month until the council's 30th session, which is due to take place in September.


"My request is based on the changing context in Sri Lanka, and the signals of broad cooperation I have received from the Government, as well as the possibility that new information will become available for the report," he wrote.


The council will determine the report's final publication date, although Zeid's opinion will be influential in its decision.


In his request to the Human Rights Council, Zeid appended a letter from Sri Lanka's Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera, which set out reforms that the new government planned to implement within 100 days, including ensuring justice for war crimes.


Samaraweera said he had invited Zeid to Sri Lanka, and all media restrictions and blocks on news websites had been lifted.


"... the Government, although only just over a month old, has already taken a series of steps to ensure freedom of expression, assembly and movement, and protect and safeguard the human rights of all citizens as already manifested and widely acknowledged by the international community," Samaraweera wrote.


The United Nations estimated in 2011 that about 40,000 Tamil civilians were killed in the final weeks of the civil war, which ended in 2009, most of them by the army. (Reuters)

  Comments - 15

  • Dom Monday, 16 February 2015 09:25 PM

    This is the power of the United States when Sri Lankan Govt supported the Western and the US. In return, they helped Sri Lanka to lift fish ban and delaying on War Crime charge.This why we have to be friendly with the European Union and the United States in order to maintain economy stability and trade union with other countries. I appeal to the viewers who condemn the relationship with the Westerners and the US and make sure they have to take this as an accountability.

    K. C. John Monday, 16 February 2015 09:36 PM

    Congratulations Mr. Samaraweera! Your non-confrontational stance has shown up the previous regime in an extremely poor light! May you long remain our Foreign Minister!

    Bala Monday, 16 February 2015 09:46 PM

    Good - settle by co-operation within limits set by us - intransigence gets us no where.

    Gamage Monday, 16 February 2015 09:55 PM

    Sweeping it under the carpet?

    Mohan d Mendis Monday, 16 February 2015 10:03 PM

    SO EVEN THE SO CALLED UNBIASED ZAID DANCES TO THE TUNE OF YANKEE MASTERS WHO INDIRECTLY GAVE THEIR APPROVAL FOR HIM TO DELAY IT, WITHOUT KNOWING HE IN FOR A RIGHT ROYAL JOY RIDE BY THAKKADI PALANA TRAITORS TO ESTABLISH THEIR 77 STYLE DICTATORIAL RULE UNTIL YOUTH ARE FORCED TONTAKE ARMS TO KICK OUT NEW SET OF TYRANTS

    Freebird Tuesday, 17 February 2015 09:01 PM

    Long ago Most popular tamil leader late Selvanyagam stated that only GOD can save the tamil people.UNHR chief also wont help those people. via DM Android App

    Ravi Monday, 16 February 2015 10:35 PM

    well done UN via DM Android App

    sunil Monday, 16 February 2015 10:41 PM

    You can see who wanted to change the government. US and UNHCR

    websavy Monday, 16 February 2015 11:00 PM

    Government should mobilize more resources towards investigation alleged war crime. Crime should not be tolerated by any civilized society. All those exposed war crimes are part of a bigger plan executed by top politicians, their goons and government servants. They should be punished without any mercy. I still remember once clip in which “LOW LEVEL” soldiers were parading dead LTTE female cadres naked body and making remark about her body. Shame!

    Punchi Putha Monday, 16 February 2015 11:25 PM

    This is another achievement of this govt. Yes, we want to be a part of world community without isolation.

    Arjuana Ranawana Monday, 16 February 2015 08:55 PM

    At the 11 hour Internationally we won an another victory at least

    rw Monday, 16 February 2015 08:53 PM

    most of them howmany via DM Android App

    Giabao Monday, 16 February 2015 09:05 PM

    It will be interesting to see what TNA and various tamil rights groups will have to say about this. They all seemed impatient to see this report LOL

    Damsen Monday, 16 February 2015 09:08 PM

    Can any body explain the logic of delaying the report. Has the Govt permitted them to come to SL to carry out their own investigation or have they achieved their goal of changing the regime

    willowsd Monday, 16 February 2015 09:19 PM

    Excellent of our FM, keep up the good work Sir.


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