29 September, 2020

Blog

Full Report Of The Office Of The UNHRC On Sri Lanka’s Reconciliation And Accountability

By Colombo Telegraph

Report of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on advice and technical assistance for the Government of Sri Lanka on promoting reconciliation and accountability in Sri Lanka, released today by the UNHRC.

Read the full Report here

Summary and Conclusions/Recomendations below.

Navi Pillay - United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights


Summary

The Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission made significant and far-reaching recommendations towards reconciliation and strengthening the rule of law in Sri Lanka, despite its limitations. In order to define areas of possible advice and assistance by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the special procedures pursuant to Human Rights Council resolution 19/2, the present report examines the recommendations of the Commission and the plans of the Government of Sri Lanka to implement them, and to address alleged violations of international law. To date, the Government has made commitments on only selected recommendations of the Commission, and has not adequately engaged civil society in support of a more consultative and inclusive reconciliation process. The Government has made significant progress in rebuilding infrastructure; and while the majority of internally displaced persons have been resettled, considerable work lies ahead in the areas of justice, reconciliation and resumption of livelihoods. The steps taken to investigate further allegations of serious violations of human rights have also been inconclusive, and lack the independence and impartiality required to inspire confidence. Meanwhile, continuing reports of extrajudicial killings, abductions and enforced disappearance in the past year highlight the urgency of action to combat impunity. It is against this background that possible areas of technical assistance are identified, and recommendations are made.

Conclusion and recommendations

Achieving reconciliation following decades of violence and mistrust is challenging in any context, but is only possible through a genuine, consultative and inclusive process that addresses the grievances of all those affected by the conflict, in an environment where the rule of law and human rights for all are respected.

While the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission had some limitations, it nonetheless made significant and far-reaching recommendations for reconciliation and strengthening the rule of law. This was widely heralded by prominent community figures, religious leaders and civil society in Sri Lanka eager to join hands in a genuinely consultative and inclusive reconciliation process. The Government therefore has a unique opportunity to build upon the Commission’s work and findings to move towards a more all-encompassing and comprehensive policy on accountability and reconciliation. Unfortunately, however, the Government has made commitments to only some of the Commission’s recommendations, and has not adequately engaged civil society to support this process. The steps taken by the Government to investigate allegations of serious violations of human rights further have also been inconclusive, and lack the independence and impartiality required to inspire confidence.

The High Commissioner recommends that the Government of Sri Lanka:
(a) Give positive consideration to the offers of assistance made in her letter dated 26 November 2012, in particular expertise in:
(i) The establishment of a truth-seeking mechanism as an integral part of a more comprehensive and inclusive approach to transitional justice;
(ii) Criminal and forensic investigations to review relevant case files and advise on additional lines of inquiry to resolve outstanding cases in accordance with international standards;
(iii) Drafting laws dealing with witness and victim protection, the right to information, the criminalization of enforced disappearances and the revision of existing laws to bring them into line with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment;
(iv) Strengthening and ensuring the independence of national institutions;
(v) The development of a national reparations policy in line with international standards;
(b) Invite special procedures mandate holders with outstanding requests to make country visits, particularly those who have offered assistance pursuant to Human Rights Council resolution 19/2;
(c) Hold public and inclusive consultations on the national plan of action for implementation of the recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission with a view to revising and expanding its scope and clarifying commitments and responsibilities;
(d) Revisit and implement the Commission’s recommendation on appointing a special commissioner of investigation into disappearances, and extend tracing programmes to include all missing persons;
(e) Open proceedings of military courts of inquiry and future trials of LTTE detainees to independent observers to increase public confidence, and allow proceedings to be evaluated in line with international standards;
(f) Publish the final report of the presidential commission of inquiry 2006 to allow the evidence gathered to be evaluated and accept international assistance to resolve outstanding cases;
(g) Take further steps in demilitarization and devolution to involve minority communities fully in decision-making processes;
(h) Engage civil society and minority community representatives in dialogue on appropriate forms of commemoration and memorialization that will advance inclusion and reconciliation.

The High Commissioner noted the views expressed by many stakeholders in Sri Lanka, including prominent community leaders, that the attention paid by the Human Rights Council to issues of accountability and reconciliation in Sri Lanka had helped to create space for debate, and catalyzed positive steps forward, however limited at this stage. The High Commissioner encourages the Council to continue its engagement and build on this momentum. In this regard, she reaffirms her long-standing call for an independent and credible international investigation into alleged violations of international human rights and humanitarian law, which could also monitor any domestic accountability process.

Read the full Report here

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 0
    0

    ‘There are currently eight outstanding requests to visit Sri Lanka by special procedures mandate holders: on minority issues; freedom of peaceful assembly and of association; freedom of opinion and expression; extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions; enforced or involuntary disappearances; human rights defenders; independence of judges and lawyers; and discrimination against women in law and practice. At the time of writing, none of these visits had been agreed to by the Government.’

    This is a very telling indictment on the Govt. It refuses to abide by international standards by bringing up the issue of sovereignity. In todays world no nation has sovereign rights to kill or deny human rights of its own people. This is the very basis of the United Nations. The govt and country will very much benefit and profit from cooperating with UN and international bodies which uphold the standards for human life and dignity.

    • 0
      0

      All the socalled international bodies you mentioned are funded by western intelgence agencies or unknown western powers. What did they do when VP denied the most basic HR of life to every Sri Lankan for 3 decades. Perhaps they were helping those terrorists in every pase as both were funded from the same sources. Sri Lanka do not accept them as international bodies but spies of the west. The only international body Sri Lanka should accept is the UN where any resolution is passed in precence of all the countries and not the UNHRC like para UN groups where resolutions are passed by some of the sellected countries.

  • 0
    0

    Madam, Pursue your mission to its logical conclusion. Let there be sanctions on Sri Lanka! People are prepared to suffer for a while, if that is the price that they have to pay to get back democracy and the concomitant good governance, the rule of the law, peace and national unity!

    • 0
      0

      man what are you talking about. democracy, good governance, rule of law , peace and national unity , where man. where do these exist man. do these exist in matara fish market man. man, all the above can be attributed to certain demorcies but not for sri lanka man. sri lanka is a lawless pariah state.

      • 0
        0

        Hey Rama, did you have any encounters with the ‘king’ of your ghetto Edward Armstrong-Anton – apparently he was going around Croydon threatening Tamil corner shop owners. He allegedly threatened to cut one guy’s penis off (something you’d never have to worry about :D)

        • 0
          0

          bogus idiot, i don’t know any anton or whoever. only person i knew was sinhala bikku of selsdon viharai. have you heard about him. he was spreading mongolian buddhas teachings to little sinhala girls. i didn’t know until i heard about the bikku that mongolian buddha was a pervert.

  • 0
    0

    UNHRC is biased and a stooge of the super powers whose agenda is to control the Ruling class and plunder the country’s natural resources. The essence of a democratic constitution is that it gives the right to the people to question their elected officials through a process, which is non existent in Sri Lanka as far as I know. When the elected officials of a government (Executive, Legislative and the Judiciary) goes south, the very people who elect them are helpless to effect change. How could the people seek justice from an injustice organisation or an injustice government?

    The reconciliation efforts are partly economic development and partly social harmony. The elected officials have so far failed to address these two issues to the satisfactory of the people who elected them. Specially the rights of property and honour in the North and East of the country.

    Could the solution be the citizens take ownership of our affairs individually and thus form a collective voice to discuss it through forums like these. I am sure there is a lot of Sri Lankan expatriates who have the financial clout to invest if communal harmony can be established through education and legislation.

  • 0
    0

    No one should forget the horrendous atrocities committed against the people in particular and the country in general for neary 30 years. All people of different communities, including the Tamils suffered untoled misery, including disintegration of their families. During this period of three decades, the so called “International Organizations” including the UNO paid only a lip service to help the suffering people and the country. You will note that unltimately the so called Big Powers and their support organizations made the “ruthless uprising” a very lucrative “Industry” to make maney at every turn of event. Every successive Government was virtually mislead to believe in reconciliation through various initiatives, such as “peace negotiations” conducted in their capital cities. This “Drama” continued for thirty long years and draged on by the Big Powers giving “false hopes” for peac.

    The people in Sri Lanka meekly waited with patience, hope against hope, that something would come about and bring redress. You know what happened aftr signing the CFL and establishment of that “Monitering Team”. How many times it was violated by the Terrorist outfit; but did this International Monitering Team had the courage to speak out. So what was the ULTIMATE CALL?

    The people elected a Government and entrsuted it with the task of “ELIMINATING” this menance. The present Government DID IT and answered the call by the PEOPLE. Now what is happening?

    Again this so called “International Players” are answering the call by the defunct terrorist outfits spread throughout the world only to “punish” and take “revenge” for the demise of their “Leadership” and the “Megalomanic” ambitions. So, in this environment what must be done by the International Players?

    Do not expect miracles within three years of regaining the cntrol of the country. Your “publishing of reports”, “visitations by the dignitaries”, “passing of one resolution after the other”, “condemnations” “demands for investigations” etc. will only harden the mind set of anger and disolve the little chance of reconciliations that the people at large are cotemplataing. Instead, these “busy bodies” must give a helping hand and show solidarity with the efforts of the people and the governing authorities to resolve matters in a slow space but which is applicable to local conditions and terms.

    Please remember, you have lost your “credibility” and during the thirty years of your actions in handling this “terrorist” menace, the people of Sri Lanka have grown to be very very suspicious of every move taken by the International Agencies. SO FIRST AND FORMOST REGAIN YOUR CREDIBILTIY AND ESTABLISH TRUSTWORTHINESS IN THE MINDS AND HEARTS OF THE PEOPLE OF SRI LANKA. And also please do not be in the company of these “vultues” who call and work for a “Regime Change” in Sri Lanka.

  • 0
    0

    It is indeed unfortunate that Navi Pillai happens to be a Tamil.

  • 0
    0

    “It is indeed unfortunate that Navi Pillai happens to be a Tamil” ???
    Please educate us, good friend, why.

    Senguttuvan

  • 0
    1

    madam pillai, please don’t you ever visit sri lanka. sinhala killers are waiting to attack you as they did when the late indian prime minister rajiv was inpecting a guard of honour. men, women or children, doesn’t matter to them. they will kill anyone. even the sinhala leaders are not any better. they are all killers. madam, do you know sinhala scum have been killing tamil people from 1948 that is from independenance. sinhala killers have killed thousands of tamil people since then. even the hindu priests were burnt alive inside the temple when they were performing pooja to deities. siinhala scum have raped thousands of tamil women and killed thousands. sinhala scum burnt down tamil properties and robbed their personal possessions. sinhala race is a real uncivilised primitive savage race. madam, i beg you, please don’t come.

    • 0
      0

      I doubt you’d have to worry about any woman ‘coming’ ever, Rama :D

      • 0
        0

        bogus sarma, there are two categories of women in this world. some i do care and some i don’t. i do care about ms pillai. i couldn’t give a monkey about shirani and chandrika.

Leave A Comment

Comments should not exceed 200 words. Embedding external links and writing in capital letters are discouraged. Commenting is automatically disabled after 7 days and approval may take up to 24 hours. Please read our Comments Policy for further details. Your email address will not be published.