Opposition MP Mahinda Samarasinghe said today the inclusion of the wording, ‘notes with appreciation in the Secretary General’s report’ mentioned in the joint resolution recently presented to the UNHRC and approved was a mistake.
Speaking during the committee stage debate on the budget he said inclusion of the words ‘note with appreciation’ in the resolution was a mistake especially because Sri Lanka was a co-sponsor of the resolution.
"These words could indicate that the UNHRC Secretary General’s report is welcomed by Sri Lanka. This is a contradiction as Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana in his statement made on behalf the country rejected the call made by UHRC for an international probe. I don’t know whose idea it was to include the word ‘notes with appreciation in the resolution,” the MP said.
He said Sri Lanka had managed to gain a slight victory in Geneva as it had managed to convince the UNHRC to give two more years to implement what it had promised in the resolution.
The MP said the mistake which Sri Lanka committed even during the tenure of the former government was failing to deliver what it had promised to the UNHRC and as such called for a local mechanism to probe human rights violations.
“A local mechanism to probe human rights violations should be set up immediately so that an international probe can be avoided. The question of an international probe had arisen because of the absence of a local mechanism,” he said.
The MP, responding to the recent statement made by TNA MP M.A Sumanthiran that his party will haul Sri Lanka before an international tribunal said such moves were far from practical.
He said government of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe declined to sign the Rome Convention and as such Sri Lanka could be taken before an international tribunal. (Yohan Perera and Ajith Siriwardana)