The United Nations yesterday said that it has reminded the Sri Lanka Government of its responsibility to protect the UN personnel in Sri Lanka ahead of the planned protest scheduled for May 1 in Colombo.
Asked about planned protests scheduled for 1 May in Sri Lanka Farhan Haq, acting deputy Spokesman for the UN Chief addressing the daily news briefing in New York said “as the host country… the Government (Sri Lanka) has responsibilities towards UN personnel and assets, so as to ensure continuation of the vital work of the Organization without any hindrance or threats to the security of its personnel or facilities.”
He also said that “in light of the demonstrations in July 2010, it would be unacceptable if the authorities failed to prevent any disruption of the normal functioning of the UN offices in Sri Lanka as a result of unruly protests.”
However, the United Nations office in Colombo on Wednesday told Daily Mirror online that it is pleased with the security being provided by the government of Sri Lanka and has no security concerns.
“The office of the UN in Colombo is like that of any office anywhere in the world the host nation guarantees the protection of the UN staff,” UN Spokesperson in Colombo Tom Hockley said.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa last week called for mass protests on May 1, against a UN report said to allege that war crimes were committed at the end of the civil war.