Posts Categorized: Politics

Facing Sri Lanka’s Ghosts

by Devon Haynie, ‘US News & World Report,’ May 18, 2017 With thousands still missing, Sri Lanka’s postwar progress comes to a halt. VAVUNIYA, Sri Lanka — At some point during its brutal 26 years, the Sri Lankan civil war brought terror or loss to virtually everyone in the country. For Kasipillai Jeyavanitha, a mother… Read more »

Sri Lanka’s Transition to Nowhere

by International Crisis Group, Brussels, May 16, 2017 ICG Sri Lanka’s Transition to Nowhere Executive Summary Two years into President Maithripala Sirisena’s term, Sri Lanka’s fragile hopes for lasting peace and cooperation across party and ethnic lines are imperilled. Despite significant achievements in the coalition government’s first nine months, progress on most of its reform… Read more »

Submission to the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

by Minority Rights Group International (MRG), the International Movement Against All Forms of Discrimination and Racism (IMADR) and Women Development Innovators (WDI), May 11, 2017 *** Sri Lanka: Issues of land and sea grabbing on minorities brought to UN In order to reflect the current situation of minorities in Sri Lanka, IMADR, Minority Rights Group International (MRG)… Read more »

UN Peacekeepers: Keeping the Peace or Preventing it?

The UN peacekeepers’ capacity to commit rape with impunity undermines prospects for sustainable peace around the world. by Nimmi Gowrinathan & Kate Cronin-Furman, Al Jazeera, May 2, 2017 In 2007, more than 100 Sri Lankan peacekeeping troops were sent back to their home country from Haiti in disgrace as a result of sexual abuse allegations,… Read more »

European Union, GSP+ and Sri Lanka

Promoting or Demoting Human Rights? by Kumarathasan Rasingam, May 7, 2017 The European Parliament in its session on 26th April, 2017 has voted in favour of Sri Lanka rejecting a motion tabled by 52 European Union members to deny the additional tariff concessions approximately 66% on several products including textiles and fisheries imported by European… Read more »

Civil Society Joint Statement on CTA

Joint Civil Society Statement: Sri Lanka’s draft Counter Terrorism Act: a license for continued state oppression, intimidation and torture May 4, 2017 The Sri Lankan cabinet’s approval of the new Counter Terrorism Act (CTA) is further confirmation of the state’s unwillingness to meet its obligations on human rights, to its citizens and the international community…. Read more »

Sri Lanka’s Crumbling Credibility

By: Kumarathasan Rasingam, April 29, 2017 — The credibility of Sri Lanka in relation to the settlement of the 60 year old ethnic problem of Tamils can be judged from the fate of several pacts, agreements and undertakings which were made from 1956 to 2009 and the Sri Lankan Governments unwillingness to comply with the… Read more »

International Criminal Court & Sri Lanka

by Thanbu Kanagasabai, LLM, London, April 25, 2017 — There appears to be some confusion as to the scope of functions and jurisdiction of this court. ICC, and more particularly its jurisdiction over Sri Lanka’s alleged war crimes etc. ICC is an Inter Governmental Organization and an International Tribunal which sits in the city of… Read more »

Tunisia’s Truth-Telling

Tunisia’s Truth-Telling Renews a Revolution’s Promise, Painfully by Carlotta Gall, ‘The New York Times,’ April 23, 2017 TUNIS — Like many of his fellow torture victims, Sami Brahim, a former political prisoner, did not expect much when he testified at the opening of Tunisia’s Truth and Dignity Commission in November. But to his surprise, he… Read more »

The Damage Done by Former UNSG Ban Ki-moon

The damage done by the former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to the Tamils in North-East Sri Lanka by Brian Senewiratne, MD, Brisbane, Australia, April 22, 2017 In the 70 year history of the United Nations, there has not been a Secretary General worse than Ban Ki-moon.  The former head of the UN Office of Internal… Read more »

FHR: Provisional Comments on Sri Lanka’s Draft CTA

by Prof. Christof Heyns & Toby Fisher, Foundation for Human Rights, Institute for Internationa and Comparative Law in Africa, Johannesburg, South Africa, April 18, 2017 SRI_LANKAS_DRAFT_COUNTER_TERRORISM_ACT_-_PUBLICATION_DRAFT_-_18_APRIL_2017 CONCLUSION 35. Whilst the amendments made to the 2016 Draft are to be welcomed, the current PLFCTA contains a number of features that are inconsistent with the international human… Read more »

SACLS: CEDAW Report & Transitional Justice

by South Asian Centre for Legal Studies blog, Colombo, March 10, 2017 With the commemoration of international women’s day this week, we must remember that the transitional justice agenda, which was in many countries advanced by courageous and resilient women activists, must be situated within a broader human rights framework. The CEDAW report, also published… Read more »

CEDAW Report on Sri Lanka

by UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, Geneva, March 3, 2017 CEDAW/C/LKA/CO/8 Concluding observations on the eighth periodic report of Sri Lanka http://tbinternet.ohchr.org/_layouts/treatybodyexternal/Download.aspx?symbolno=CEDAW%2FC%2FLKA%2FCO%2F8&Lang=en The Committee considered the eighth report of Sri Lanka (CEDAW/C/LKA/8) at its 1484th and 1485th meetings, on 22 February 2017 (see CEDAW/C/SR.1484 and CEDAW/C/SR.1485). The Committee’s list of issues and… Read more »

GoSL Complicity in Paramilitary Factions’ HR Abuses

from Wikileaks, accessed April 20, 2017 https://wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/07COLOMBO728_a.html Date: 2007 May 18, 09:22 Classified By: Ambassador Robert O. Blake, Jr., for reasons 1.4(b, d) 1. (S) SUMMARY: Allegations of government complicity in crimes committed by organized paramilitary groups have mounted in the last year. Paramilitaries such as the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)-breakaway Karuna group and… Read more »

‘The Tamil Nadu factor’

Demanding justice for genocide in Sri Lanka by Ana Pararajasingham, ‘Open Democracy,’ April 13, 2017 From politicians to protestors, the people of Tamil Nadu are making waves in Indian politics, rallying around the need for justice for the war crimes committed against Sri Lanka’s Tamils. Protests began in Tamil Nadu in January 2017 against the… Read more »

The Economic Importance of the North-East of Sri Lanka

by Kamalika Pieris, ‘The Island,’ Colombo, May 3, 2016 Several valuable economic resources of Sri Lanka are found only in the Northern, Northwestern and Eastern Provinces. However, Article 25 of the United Nations International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Right says ‘nothing in the present Covenant shall be interpreted as impairing the inherent right… Read more »

For Sri Lanka, US Security Cooperation is Not the Cure

by Taylor Dibbert, ‘War on the Rocks,’ Washington, DC, April 3, 2017 Sri Lanka is a complicated country. In a recent article, Nilanthi Samaranayake notes that Sri Lanka’s foreign policy has been evolving since the unexpected ascension of President Maithripala Sirisena in January 2015. Unfortunately, the trends that Samaranayake has succinctly captured — especially a… Read more »

What Just Happened in Geneva (2.0)?

by Sri Lanka Campaign for Justice and Peace, London, March 31, 2017 Last week, members of the UN Human Rights Council adopted another resolution on Sri Lanka – Resolution 34/1 – renewing the government’s pledges to deliver a meaningful process of justice and reconciliation.  In this post, we briefly explain how and why the resolution… Read more »

Holding On To Life

by Francis Harrison, ‘Huffington Post’ The Blog, Los Angeles, March 30, 2017 Tired and in shock, he leans on her shoulder as if it were his mother’s. His reddened eyes keep on closing as he nods off, drained by sleepless nights spent reliving the past. Seeing the two of them together – both torture survivors… Read more »