President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has appointed a three -member Commission of Inquiry (CoI) to investigate, inquire into and report or take necessary actions on findings of preceding Commissions or Committees appointed to investigate into human rights (HR) violations, serious violations of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and other such offences, a statement from the President’s Media Division said.
The Extraordinary Gazette notification pertaining to this was issued on January 21.
The statement said Supreme Court Judge A. H. M. D. Nawaz has been appointed as the Chairman of the Commission. Retired Inspector General of Police Chandra Fernando and retired District Secretary Nimal Abeysiri are the other members.
The Commission is entrusted with following responsibilities:
(a) Find out whether preceding Commissions of Inquiry and Committees which have been appointed to investigate into human rights violations, have revealed any human rights violations, serious violations of the international humanitarian law and other such serious offences;
(b) Identify what are the findings of the said Commissions and Committees related to the serious violations of human rights, serious violations of international humanitarian laws and other such offences and whether recommendations have been made on how to deal with the said facts;
(c) Manner in which those recommendations have been implemented so far in terms of the existing law and what steps need to be taken to implement those recommendations further in line with the present Government policy;
(d) Overseeing of whether action is being taken according to (b) and (c) above The Commission has the authority to make required inquires and investigations and to present interim reports where it is necessary, to the President. All Government officials have been directed to provide required assistance and information when requested by the Commission.
The final report of the Commission should be handed over to the President within 6 months since the date of the appointment of the Commission.
The background to the establishment of the Commission of Inquiry is given in the Gazette.
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