- Ranked 68th in the list of contributors last year
By Easwaran Rutnam
Sri Lanka contributed US$17,000 to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) last year, the OHCHR said in a report on Friday.
The report said Sri Lanka was the 68th highest contributor to the OHCHR in 2019 ahead of Singapore which contributed US$15,000 and a number of other countries while the European Commission contributed the highest amount of US$20,689,560.
The High Commissioner for Human Rights launched the UN Human Rights Report 2019, which presented the results achieved last year by the UN Human Rights Office through the extensive work of its more than 1,400 staff based in its Geneva headquarters and in 84 field presences all over the world. The report noted that the cash flow crisis that the UN faces led to further cuts in the regular budget of the UN Human Rights Office in 2019, of around 16% compared to 2018. This situation has made it impossible for the Office to honour all its mandated activities and has made it more dependent on voluntary contributions. However, the UN Human Rights Office said its voluntary income in 2019 also decreased by 4.3% when compared to 2018.
In 2019 Sri Lanka had a more stronger relationship with OHCHR, a relationship which took a U-turn after the current government took office. Sri Lanka this year withdrew from the co-sponsorship of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) Resolution on “Promoting reconciliation, accountability, and human rights in Sri Lanka”.
The report said in 2019, OHCHR continued to support the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka as the designated domestic mechanism to conduct the human rights screening of Sri Lanka military personnel.
who were nominated for deployment to UN peacekeeping missions. Moreover, OHCHR deployed a rapid response team to strengthen the UNCT’s capacity to monitor the human rights situation before and during the presidential elections held in November. A human rights assessment mission was also deployed to Sri Lanka, in consultation with the Resident Coordinator, to support the monitoring and risk assessment work of the Human Rights Adviser, particularly in the context of the presidential elections held on 16 November.
The mission convened more than 70 meetings with different interlocutors, including the Resident Coordinator, national and international electoral observation organizations, religious organizations and civil society actors. The mission bolstered the human rights monitoring capacity of the HRA and provided additional early warning analysis to inform the UN system on the level and type of risks for further deterioration of the human rights situation.
Blurb -- OHCHR continued to support the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka as the designated domestic mechanism to conduct the human rights screening of Sri Lanka military personnel who were nominated for deployment to UN peacekeeping missions