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U.S. slams change

11 September 2010 03:16 pm - 47     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The United States today condemned Sri Lanka's passage of a constitutional amendment granting the president vast new powers, saying it undermined democracy.

 

The parliament on Wednesday voted for the measure sought by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, which removes a presidential two-term limit and grants him more power over appointments to the police, judiciary, public service and electoral commissions.

 

"The United States is concerned that this constitutional amendment weakens checks and balances and thus undermines the principles of constitutional democracy," State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said in a statement.

 

Crowley called on Rajapaksa's government to take steps to strengthen independent institutions, increase transparency and promote national reconciliation.

 

The government argued the constitutional change was justified to give Rajapaksa, whose second term ends in 2017, time to build Sri Lanka's $42 billion economy after victory over the Tamil Tiger separatists last year.

 

Opposition and rights groups criticized the measure as a blow to democracy and a step toward dictatorship by Rajapaksa, who parlayed last year's victory over the rebels into a re-election to a second term in January and a landslide for his United Peoples Freedom Alliance party in parliament in April.

 

However, critics accuse him of stifling dissent, jailing opponents and disregarding the rule of law as he holds an office with almost unchecked control of the government. Reuters

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  Comments - 47

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  • KEJ Sunday, 12 September 2010 05:51 AM

    This is not just another Iran... We will back to world power...
    we have our own way.. We did it past.. now planing to do in future

    Hussein Sunday, 12 September 2010 07:18 AM

    Everytime another country says anything about this dump all patriotic lankans jump up and say mind your own business. Fair enough. But then stop begging the USA, Europe and India for trade concessions. Just go to China and prostrate before them. The whole world knows the shameless nature of the Sri Lankan state.

    shanilsamarakoon Sunday, 12 September 2010 07:58 AM

    It's amazing how petty our people are. Getting so hung up in the US voicing concern. Like it or not they do have a say as they do fund us in a big way.

    Above the crowd Sunday, 12 September 2010 08:43 AM

    Its amazing, we have so many simple minded people, ,judging by the comments.

    Above the crowd Sunday, 12 September 2010 08:45 AM

    Iran,Venezuela Myanmar,Zimbabwe and we have joined the club. ,

    mevan Sunday, 12 September 2010 09:35 AM

    Those Americans should be tied to trees(Mervins method) and given Lemmon Puffs(Wimals Method)

    Kumara Peiris Sunday, 12 September 2010 09:45 AM

    who are them to criticize what our parliament decides ? it's not their country for them to come and tell us what is good for us. A good friend is one who respects their friend and his right to decides what's good for him. US has never treated us like a true friend would have treated us, not in our hardest of times (specially in our hard times)

    shanilsamarakoon Sunday, 12 September 2010 09:56 AM

    Who cares who says it...there's truth in the statement. We are headed towards a dictatorship. A one part free reign regime. Sadly..our people are more concerned with chauvinism.

    Holman Sunday, 12 September 2010 10:50 AM

    Americans are hypocrits. See what they did to Iraq. May be they are trying something on us, too, who knows what their ulterior motives are.

    Academic Sunday, 12 September 2010 11:38 AM

    Just as well Sri Lanka does not depend on people like you for policy advice.

    Sisira Sunday, 12 September 2010 11:44 AM

    I agree with 'Sad Lankan'. Unfortunately, the majority of people making anti-US comments on this forum don't appear to be that bright...

    rajitha Sunday, 12 September 2010 11:52 AM

    GoSL should make a special statement on Obama's new health care policy.

    Don Sunday, 12 September 2010 11:59 AM

    Democracy in a country is built into the constituition and that is where democracy is.So I can not figure out what is undemocratic here.

    Rajitha Sunday, 12 September 2010 12:53 PM

    yeah the club that doesn't dance to the American tunes

    Above the crowd Sunday, 12 September 2010 01:50 PM

    U S, our only hope .

    Ananda HerathHerath Sunday, 12 September 2010 01:55 PM

    You are a simpleton , yourself.

    lionheart Saturday, 11 September 2010 03:22 PM

    Please mind you own business. You are worried because now you can not push SL around implementation of 17th & 13+.

    korala Saturday, 11 September 2010 03:33 PM

    there is a fire in califirnia , please consern about that.more natural things to come.

    s.jayawardene Saturday, 11 September 2010 03:39 PM

    Frustrated and Cowardly opposition triggers statements against our country.

    Anver Saturday, 11 September 2010 03:40 PM

    US has no right to intervene in our internal matters. However, does our economy depends on them in any way? Let us not forget those dark days of 1973......if anyone can remember.

    Yehiya-Doha Sunday, 12 September 2010 02:55 PM

    Sri lankan need external support to peg the democracy,

    Harsha Saturday, 11 September 2010 03:41 PM

    Even if it is true, it is non of the their business. Who gave the USA the authority to police the world ? It is time to hit back.

    Thomas Saturday, 11 September 2010 03:43 PM

    It is a known fact, at least to well educated people, but the people at large in villages etc do not understand what their liberties are. PARADISE LOST.

    Thomas Saturday, 11 September 2010 03:45 PM

    It appears the " LION HEART " knows only jungle law of animals, and not about laws governing people's liberty

    Ranjith Saturday, 11 September 2010 03:47 PM

    Of course, GOSL and its citizen knows about friends very well now.

    Royalist Saturday, 11 September 2010 03:59 PM

    We know all about the American democracy card... At the back of it is the picture of an oil well...

    danny Saturday, 11 September 2010 04:14 PM

    We deserve the rulers we get. Anyway thanks for the try USA.

    SL Ambasodaar Saturday, 11 September 2010 04:26 PM

    You Americans cannot control your internal affair trying to control external affairs.

    citizen1 Saturday, 11 September 2010 04:37 PM

    Plenty of big mouths here but then why do we send delegations with the begging bowl to these countries if we are so independent?

    Dayaratne Monday, 13 September 2010 03:18 PM

    Brilliantly put! The world has inter-dependent countries in the 21st Century onwards.

    pon Monday, 13 September 2010 02:42 AM

    WELL DO YOU THINK INDIA AND CHINA ARE THERE BECAUSE THEY LOVE YOU SO MUCH? NEVER FORGET INDIA TRAINED AND GAVE SANCTUARY TO THE LTTE THAT COST US 30+ YEARS OF DEVELOPMENT.

    Faqi Saturday, 11 September 2010 11:22 PM

    Frogs living in a well thinks that the extent of their whole world. similarly some of the commentators here too think like that. Be careful what you say, stupidity has been the bane of Sri lankans.

    Faqi Saturday, 11 September 2010 11:23 PM

    "Where ignorance is bliss, its folly to be wise"

    Selva Sunday, 12 September 2010 02:27 AM

    message is more important than who gave that mesage. We always go round and round and overlook the truth. Truth is truth.

    Nayana Sunday, 12 September 2010 03:15 AM

    Yes, since we find them too interfering and unable to mind their business, we should refuse ALL aid and help from the US.
    Let us turn down any assistance from USAID, so that they can offer that help elsewhere. We should get help from countries that will be very generous, and yet, mind their business. We should show them they have to keep their opinions to themselves, but give us all the dollars they can.

    bash Sunday, 12 September 2010 03:34 AM

    WOW, good opportunity for this regime to use.... to brand any Sri Lankan party or person body opposing the 18th Amendments as supporting the USA and is a traitor

    menaka Sunday, 12 September 2010 03:43 AM

    who asked for ur comments? Please mind your own business!

    Babanis Sunday, 12 September 2010 03:54 AM

    An imaginary one Sri Lanka is looking for since 1970!!!!

    Sue Sunday, 12 September 2010 03:58 AM

    I suppose its alright to get their aid but not alright for them to comment on the affairs of our State. I don't care what anyone say, they can even call me a traitor, however, if our own people don't have the back bone to speak up and take action, its high time someone else did to save out country from going bad to worse.

    Ajith Monday, 13 September 2010 04:39 AM

    The USA has no right to criticise SL OR ANY OTHER COUNTRY. Since 9/11 all they have done is export hatred, fear and their own brand of terrorism.

    Jehan Sunday, 12 September 2010 04:10 AM

    USA has no moral right to speak about Democracy... US is the top violator of Human Rights(Iraq,Afghanistan) Depriving rights of electing peoples representative( Iraq. Afghanistan) they are so worried because now china has a foot here and they will be ruling the Asia west shipping route, which is currently controlled by pro US Singapore. electing people is Srilankans right US must remember that US citizens are not allowed to vote in Srilankan Elections, so US mind ur own business.

    KD Sunday, 12 September 2010 04:23 AM

    Typical colombian mindset. Who think they are superior and look down on people live in villages.

    Bakamoona Sunday, 12 September 2010 04:26 AM

    Ha. ha. Have you now become our opposition party ? Come and sit in our Parliament, pls. You will receive a warm welcome from our guys. heh.

    kulasuriya Sunday, 12 September 2010 04:35 AM

    Absolutely we saw the laws as well as how it implemented when US bomb innocent Iraqis and Afghans in millions.

    Sad Lankan Sunday, 12 September 2010 04:53 AM

    It is sad to see the "proud" Lankans asking the American to mind his own business. Do we even realize the hole we are digging ourselves into? A twelve years for a president - why would he need any more than 7 years (war was on in 2009, so he technically has 7 whole years until 2017) to finish the job? We Lankans don't realize that we get most of our funds from the advanced nations, primarily from the U.S. Let us not fool ourselves into thinking we can survive on our own - we still need friends, and no one did too well in the long run when they had communists for friends.

    p.wijesekera Monday, 13 September 2010 05:05 AM

    Those who attack the USA are disciples of Wimal Weerawansa. They should all fast unto death outside the US Embassy


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