- How many amongst us, would have personally experienced in some form or another the real horrible effects of terrorism
Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN Mohan Peiris said there must be zero-tolerance to terrorism and the country’s commitment to Human Rights is not an opportunity to vindicate the programmes of terror structured conveniently on the basis of a political agenda.
During consultations on the Seventh Biennial Review of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy, he made these remarks on behalf of Sri Lanka.
“As we gather here today, in this Assembly Hall, and deliberate on this most important subject, I was wondering how many amongst us, would have personally experienced in some form or another the real horrible effects of terrorism. Some of us may have experienced it more than others. For some of our fellow citizens back at home, at one point in time it may have even become a way of life, as it might be the case even today for some of our Member States. Mr. President, when your fellow citizens are unable to lead their lives without the guarantee of their most fundamental rights, what is a responsible government constitutionally mandated to do? How should it respond? This was the dilemma facing the Government of Sri Lanka. For nearly 30 years we tried a cocktail of mechanisms from peace talks to ceasefires with the aid of our interlocutors, however the high price, to bring the group of non-state actors responsible for their extremely brutal terror tactics to the table, into the democratic fold. The Government had no choice but to carry out the humanitarian operation in 2009 that finally liberated the people of Sri Lanka from the clutches of that group. Mr. President, Sri Lanka has come a long way since those dark days. If you really think about it, it is somewhat surprising that for a country that had borne the brunt of nearly 03 decades of terrorism, we are where we are today. There is peace in the country. It is a success story. Ironically there is amongst us those who find peace an inconvenient environment. We remain confident that with the resilience of the Sri Lankan people and the strong leadership of the Government, supported by the United Nations, we will continue to address these challenges having due respect for the rule of law and Human Rights,” he said.