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Sri Lanka rejected the call of UNHRC for International Inquiry

Sri Lanka rejected a call by United Nations human rights for an international inquiry.

Feb 26, 2014 18:10 IST
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Sri Lanka rejected the call by United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for an international inquiry on 25 February 2014. The call for international inquiry was made by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay in her report on post-civil war scenario in Sri Lanka.

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Pillay’s draft report says that Sri Lanka is facing mounting international failing to investigate allegations of war crimes. The report recommended for an independent, credible criminal and forensic investigation to conduct with international assistance into all alleged violations of human rights and humanitarian law.

The report also suggested for establishing a truth-seeking process and urged Sri Lankan Government to take more steps to demilitarize the former war zone. Those perpetrators of attacks on minorities, media and human rights defenders be arrested and punished.

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa's administration rejected Pillay’s report expressing the recommendations as arbitrary, intrusive and of a political nature.

In another development the US is planning to propose a third resolution at the UNHCR over Srilanka’s failure to properly investigate alleged atrocities and wars crimes committed during the civil war. The US earlier had successfully carried out two resolutions urging Sri Lanka to conduct its own investigation into allegations against Sri Lankan government troops.

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Background

In 2009 Sri Lanka’s civil war between the government troops and the Tamil Tiger rebels (LTTE) ended. The LTTE fought for a separate state for the ethnic minority Tamils in the north and east of Sri Lanka. The government troops crushed the Tamil Tiger rebels which lead to mass graves which were discovered recently.

A UN report said almost 40000 Tamil civilians died in government attacks but Srilanka denied such a high toll of deaths and later Sri Lanka’s Government declared that not a single civilian was killed. In 2011 Sri Lanka acknowledged some civilian deaths and announced a census of the war dead but its results were vague.

Government troops were accused of deliberately shelling civilians, hospitals and blocking food and medical aid to hundreds of thousands of people. The rebels were accused of holding civilians as human shields, killing those who escaped their control and recruiting child soldiers.

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