The French Embassy in Colombo has stressed on the need to pay compensations to the family members of the 17 aid workers killed in 2006, informed sources said yesterday.
These aid workers attached to the French NGO ‘Action Against Hunger’ were killed during the height of fighting between the security forces and the LTTE in Muttur. Besides, five students were also killed in an incident in Trincomalee the same year.
During the session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in March, 2012, the government delegation agreed to reopen the cases into these two incidents and prosecute the suspects.
Accordingly, the Attorney General’s Department instructed the police to resume investigations into this incident for prosecution. The police have already resumed investigations.
Meanwhile, the French Embassy in Colombo took fresh diplomatic initiatives in this case, and made inquiries from the Attorney General’s Department on the progress into these investigations. In this exercise, French Ambassador Ms. Christine Robichon reportedly highlighted, during her meeting with the Attorney General’s Department, the need to compensate the family members of these aid workers.
The Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) also recommended action with regard to this incident.
An official of the Department told the Daily Mirror yesterday that the payment of compensations to the victims’ families could ward off international pressure against Sri Lanka. The Human Rights Watch and the Amnesty International had also raised this before many an international fora. (Kelum Bandara)