Posts Categorized: Human Rights

US Policy Towards and Continuing Engagement with Sri Lanka

The 2012 resolution, passed by a majority of countries on the Human Rights Council, sent a clear message that the international community shared the United States’ concerns regarding the lack of progress on reconciliation and accountability. The 2012 resolution simply asked the government of Sri Lanka to fulfill its own commitments to its people from its Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission report, and to meet its own international obligations.

Find and Prosecute Those Responsible for the Massacre of 17 ACF Aid Workers

“It’s great that the international community got together to pass this resolution, but it’s really not enough because the terms of the resolution are not strong enough and it doesn’t force Sri Lanka to do something concrete,” said Chetcuti.

“What we are calling for is an international, credible investigation into war crimes. Asking Sri Lanka to do its own inquiry is ironic as its own army is accused of being behind some of these human rights violations.”

TNA Statement on Attack on ‘Uthayan’

These attacks on the democratic expression of Tamils in the North and East are clearly carried out with the active support, sanction and collusion of the Sri Lankan government. They are a vain and counterproductive attempt to suppress and persecute Tamils for their political aspirations..

We reiterate that to prevent a non-recurrence of the past, Sri Lanka must embark on a meaningful process of reconciliation based on ensuring truth, justice and reparations for victims of violent crimes committed by all parties..

‘Haunted by Her Yesterdays’ Haunted by her yesterdays This documentary tells a story of silent agony, trapped screams and repressed mourning. A story of women forced to deny their identity – who are trapped in between a government which sees them as “Tigers,” and a society whose norms they are no longer deemed worthy of. These women fought… Read more »

Booklet on Sri Lanka

Booklet on Sri Lanka prepared for UNHRC March 2013 Booklet for UNHRC March 2013 C o n t e n t s Preface ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 2 Executive Summary ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 3 UN Human Rights Council: 2012 Resolution on Sri Lanka …………………………………………… 5 Excerpts of speeches pertaining to the 2012 Resolution from select countries …….. 7 Excerpts of… Read more »

Tamil Nadu Assembly Passes Resolution on Sri Lanka

The Tamil Nadu Assembly has adopted a resolution asking the Centre to stop treating Sri Lanka as a friendly country. It also calls for a referendum on a separate Eelam among Tamils in Sri Lanka and Lankan Tamils abroad. The Tamil Nadu Assembly unanimously adopted the resolution urging the Centre to slap economic embargo on Colombo till the “suppression” of Tamils was stopped and those responsible for “genocide and war crimes” faced an international probe.

Resolution Another UN ‘Grave Failure’

While PEARL appreciates continued attention by the Council on Sri Lanka, we regret the resolution’s failure to establish an international Commission of Inquiry to investigate war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide in Sri Lanka.

Geneva Resolution: Not A Victory For Tamils, But A Defeat For Sri Lanka

Geneva Resolution: Not a Victory for Tamils, but a Defeat for Sri Lanka PM – TGTE – Visuvanathan Rudrakumaran The resolution proposed by America at the Human Rights Council related to Sri Lanka was passed by a majority of 13 votes. Out of the Human Rights Council comprising of 47 member states, 26 voted for the resolution, 13 against… Read more »

Amnesty: Sri Lanka’s UPR Review

On 15 March, the UN Human Rights Council adopted the Working Group report of Sri Lanka’s second Universal Periodic Review. Amnesty International delegates attended the session with Dr Manoharan, father of Ragihar Manoharan, one of five young men killed by Sri Lankan security forces in 2006. Dr Manoharan delivered a powerful statement on Sri Lanka’s… Read more »

The Political Economy of Prejudice

The post-war context in Sri Lanka offers significant scope for potential gains and conflicts over re-alignments of networks of patronage and clientelist redistribution, which along with ethno-religious relations was in many ways over-determined by the war. And the dominant players in this competition will only be too happy to align themselves with the so-called moral and spiritual regeneration of the body politic i.e. ethno-religious nationalism and extremism, if it will give them an edge in cementing their socio-political bases (perhaps better seen as multi-class factions?), economic privileges and crucially, reconfiguring the social and eventually even the socio-political and legal substance of citizenship itself.

Sri Lanka Accused of Ongoing Torture

He said he had his toenails extracted and was then electrocuted, rendering him unconscious for three days. Now convicted, he has been sent to prison in the central city of Kandy, far from his home in the north. He has barely been permitted contact with his wife or son, who was born just months after his arrest.

The report also criticises a government rehabilitation programme for former Tamil Tiger soldiers that, it says, is also blighted by violence and, despite officially being classed as voluntary, is frequently used as a tool to prolong detention without trial.

USTPAC Gives Cautious Welcome to UNHRC Resolution

US Tamil Political Action Council (USTPAC) Accords Cautious Welcome to the UN Human Rights Council Resolution on Sri Lanka USTPAC Press Release UNHRC22 Resolution Mar222013 The Geneva based UN Human Rights Council adopted a second resolution on Promoting Accountability and Reconciliation in Sri Lanka, putting Sri Lanka under close scrutiny for grave rights violations, but… Read more »

CTC: A Missed Opportunity

For Immediate Release  The United Nations Human Rights Council Resolution on Sri Lanka : A Missed Opportunity Geneva, Switzerland The United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva today passed Resolution 22/L.1, on “Promoting Reconciliation and Accountability in Sri Lanka”, with 26 of 47 states voting in favour of the resolution. The resolution was proposed by… Read more »

CPA – Commentary on Land Circular 2013/01

 Commentary on Accelerated Programme on Solving Post Conflict Land Issues in the Northern and Eastern Provinces  In January 2013 the Government issued a new circular titled Accelerated Programme on Solving Post Conflict State Lands Issues in the Northern and Eastern Provinces- Land Circular 2013/01 (herein referred to as the Circular), which is the most recent… Read more »

Militarization & Reconciliation

Is it possible to secure the dignity, rights and well-being of a conflict-affected population by incorporating them into a military juggernaut that has quickly grown to dominate all spheres of life?

Minority Languages Threatened by Assimilation

Thousands of minority languages threatened by assimilation, conflict and forced displacement – UN expert GENEVA (12 March 2013) – The United Nations Independent Expert on minority issues, Rita Izsák, today warned that half of the world’s estimated 6,000 plus languages will likely die out by the end of the century, and urged world governments to… Read more »

For Sri Lanka, More Empty Words

The government of President Mahinda Rajapaksa greeted last year’s vote with complaints that it was being persecuted by the international community — and used that as a pretext to obstruct even more thoroughly the work of journalists, lawyers and activists. As Mohan Peiris, a former attorney general who is now Sri Lanka’s chief justice,said last March: “It won’t change anything. We will just forge ahead as planned.”

In May 2009, the Tamil Tigers, a merciless guerrilla group, lost the fight to carve out a separate state for the island’s Tamil minority. The war ended in a blaze of blood, with roughly 40,000 Tamil civilians killed, according to a United Nations estimate.

Four years later, the government has not investigated numerous charges that the army committed atrocities during the waning years of the conflict. Straining the fragile peace yet more, Tamils in the country’s north and east continue to live under the close watch of the Sri Lankan military.

UNHRC Resolution on Sri Lanka

Introduction to Voting on Resolution by the US US Introduction to Voting on Resolution on Sri Lanka March 2013 [PDF] Vote Count on Resolution Revised – Gabon voted YES late Voting on Sri Lanka Resolution at UNHRC March 2013 [PDF] For = 26 Abstain = 8 Against = 13 Tamil version of resolution 22/1 [PDF] Co-sponsors of the… Read more »

Sri Lanka ‘War’ a Genocide

Why Tamil Nadu is Right to Call Sri Lanka ‘War’ a Genocide A part of the national debate on the Sri Lankan Tamil issue in the wake of the second US resolution at the UNHRC in another two days is increasingly disturbing because it’s not only dismissive of the tenets of human rights, but is… Read more »