The Sri Lankan Government confirmed its intent on revisiting the provisions of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) with a view to making the appropriate amendments, a joint statement by the Sri Lanka-EU said.
The 23rd meeting of the Joint Commission between Sri Lanka and the EU was held via video conference yesterday.
The EU also stressed the importance of applying international human rights standards in the fight against terrorism. Sri Lanka looks forward to continuing the Counter-Terrorism Dialogue and Security Cooperation.
The European Union and Sri Lanka took note of the ad-hoc Counter-Terrorism Dialogue, which took place in Colombo in July 2019 and reviewed on-going cooperation provided through an EU funded project with UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and Interpol.
Meanwhile, the European Union expressed its strong concerns about Sri Lanka’s import restrictions imposed since April 2020, following COVID, which have a negative impact on European businesses.
The EU urged Sri Lanka to notify these measures to the World Trade Organisation. The EU and Sri Lanka committed to further enhance the regular EU-Sri Lanka Investor Dialogue to address impediments affecting trade and investment from the EU.
Sri Lanka also reaffirmed the commitments made to effectively implement the 27 international Conventions covered by the GSP+ scheme on human and labour rights, environment and good governance. In this context, the EU reiterated the need for Sri Lanka to amend the Prevention of Terrorism Act and bring it in line with international standards.
Meanwhile, the EU regretted Sri Lanka’s withdrawal from its co-sponsorship of the UN Human Rights Council Resolution 30/1 and subsequent resolutions that incorporated and built on it.
In addition, to the support for Sri Lanka’s COVID-19 response, the Working Group appraised positively another three grants from the European Union worth €35.75 million, which will support Sri Lanka’s justice sector, help improve food safety, and strengthen efforts to mitigate climate change. Implementation is planned for 2021 and beyond.
The EU and Sri Lanka committed to working together in the coming years on the preparation of possible new actions aiming at addressing green recovery, promotion of inclusive and peaceful society, and water management.