23 September, 2020

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Full Text Of The HRC Draft Resolution On Sri Lanka

The draft resolution below will be tabled next week in Geneva;

HRC 30th Session – Draft Resolution

Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein - The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein – The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Item 2: Promoting reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka

The Human Rights Council,

Preambular paragraphs

Pp1
Reaffirming the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, (HRC 25/1)

Pp2
Guided by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenants on Human Rights and other relevant instruments, (HRC 25/1)

Pp3
Recalling also Human Rights Council resolutions 19/2 of 22 March 2012, 22/1 of 21 March 2013, and 25/1 of 27 March 2014 on promoting reconciliation and accountability in Sri Lanka, (HRC 25/1 updated)

Pp4
Reaffirming its commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka, (HRC 25/1)

Pp5
Reaffirming that it is the responsibility of each State to ensure the full enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms of its entire population, (HRC 25/1)

Pp6
Welcoming the historic free and fair democratic elections in January and August 2015 and peaceful political transition in Sri Lanka,

Pp7
Taking note with interest of the passage of the nineteenth amendment to the Sri Lankan Constitution and its contributions to promoting democratic governance and independent oversight of key institutions,

Pp8
Noting with appreciation the actions taken by the new Government of Sri Lanka to advance respect for human rights and recognizing the positive changes in Sri Lanka as a result of these actions,

Pp9
Welcoming the establishment of the Commission to Investigate allegations of bribery or corruption and its initial investigations into major cases of corruption, fraud, and abuses of power, and stressing the importance of such investigations and the prosecution of those responsible, in ending impunity and promoting good governance,

Pp10
Welcoming and acknowledging the progress made by the Government of Sri Lanka in rebuilding infrastructure, demining and resettling internally displaced persons, while noting nonetheless that considerable work lies ahead in the areas of justice and reconciliation and to deliver durable solutions for all internally displaced persons , (HRC 25/1 adjusted)

Pp11
Expressing concern at the continuing reports of violations of human rights in Sri Lanka, including those involving sexual and gender-based violence, torture , abductions, as well as intimidation of and threats against human rights defenders, and members of civil society, (HRC 25/1 +new language)

Pp12
Reaffirming that all Sri Lankans are entitled to the full enjoyment of their human rights regardless of religion, belief or ethnicity, in a peaceful and unified land, (HRC 25/1)

Pp13
Reaffirming also that States must ensure that any measure taken to combat terrorism complies with their obligations under international law, in particular international human rights law, international refugee law and international humanitarian law, as applicable, (HRC 25/1)

Pp14
Taking note of the new Government of Sri Lanka’s commitment to pursuing justice and reconciliation, including the creation of the Office of National Unity and Reconciliation,

Pp15
Emphasizing the importance of a comprehensive approach to transitional justice incorporating the full range of judicial and non-judicial measures, including, inter alia, individual prosecutions, reparations, truth-seeking, institutional reform, vetting of public employees and officials, or an appropriately conceived combination thereof, in order to, inter alia, ensure accountability, serve justice, provide remedies to victims, promote healing and reconciliation, establish independent oversight of the security system, restore confidence in the institutions of the State and promote the rule of law in accordance with international human rights law, with a view to preventing the recurrence of violations and abuses, (HRC 25/1)

Pp16
Recognizing that transitional justice mechanisms work best when they are independent, impartial, and transparent; are led by individuals known for displaying the highest degree of integrity; utilize consultative and participatory methods that include the views from all relevant stakeholders including, but not limited to, victims, women, youth, representatives from various religions, ethnicities, and geographic locations as well as marginalized groups; and designed and implemented based on expert advice from those with relevant international and domestic experience,

Pp17
Recalling the responsibility of States to comply with their relevant obligations to prosecute those responsible for gross violations of human rights and serious violations of international humanitarian law constituting crimes under international law, with a view to end impunity, (HRC 25/1)

Pp18
Taking note of the review of High Security Zones and welcomes the initial steps taken to return land previously taken by defense forces to its rightful civilian owners and to help local populations to resume livelihoods and restore normality to civilian life,

Pp19
Welcoming the new Government of Sri Lanka’s commitments on the devolution of political authority,

Pp20
Taking note of the report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission of Sri Lanka its findings and recommendations, and acknowledging its possible contribution to the process of meaningful national reconciliation in Sri Lanka, (HRC 25/1), and recalling its constructive recommendations

Pp21
Welcoming the new Government of Sri Lanka’s engagement with the UN Secretary General and the Office of the High Commissioner, including its invitation to the High Commissioner to visit Sri Lanka,

Pp22
Welcoming also the 30 March – 3 April 2015 visit and observations of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence, and the invitation to visit extended to the Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances,

Pp23
Welcoming the work of the Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights requested by HRC 25/1 to undertake a comprehensive investigation into alleged serious violations and abuses of human rights and related crimes by both parties in Sri Lanka during the period covered by the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission, and to establish the facts and circumstances of such alleged violations and of the crimes perpetrated with a view to ending impunity and ensuring accountability, with assistance from relevant experts and special procedures mandate holders,

Pp24
Encouraging the Government of Sri Lanka to continue its dialogue and cooperation and to increase cooperation with the Office of the High Commissioner, including with regard to technical assistance, (new language, + HRC 25/1)

Operative paragraphs

1. Welcomes the oral update presented by the High Commissioner to the Human Rights Council at its twenty-seventh session, the report of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on promoting reconciliation and accountability in Sri Lanka and the report of its Investigation on Sri Lanka requested in Human Rights Council resolution 25/1 including its findings, and conclusions, and calls upon the Government of Sri Lanka to implement the recommendations contained therein;

2. Takes note of the new Government of Sri Lanka’s commitment to undertaking a comprehensive approach to transitional justice incorporating the full range of judicial and non-judicial measures, including, inter alia, criminal prosecutions, truth-seeking, reparations, institutional reforms and other guarantees of non-repetition;

3. Encourages the new Government of Sri Lanka to respect its positive commitment to bolster and safeguard the credibility of these justice processes by engaging in broad national consultations with the inclusion of victims and civil society, including non-governmental organizations, from all affected communities that will inform the design and implementation of these processes, as well as assistance from international experts and the international community throughout the process, and to ensuring strong and effective witness and victim protection measures are in place;

4. Welcomes the government’s recognition that accountability is essential to uphold the rule of law and build confidence in the people of all communities of Sri Lanka in the justice system, takes note with appreciation of the Government of Sri Lanka’s proposal to establish a Judicial Mechanism with a Special Counsel to investigate allegations of violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law, as applicable; and affirms that credible transitional justice process should include independent judicial and prosecutorial institutions led by individuals known for integrity and impartiality; and calls upon the Government of Sri Lanka, to involve international investigators, prosecutors and judges in Sri Lanka’s justice processes;

5. Encourages the Government of Sri Lanka to review and, where required, reform domestic law to ensure that it allows for prosecution of the full range of crimes under domestic and international law involving violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law;

6. Welcomes the proposal by the Government of Sri Lanka to establish a Commission for Truth, Justice, Reconciliation, and Non Recurrence; an Office of Missing Persons; and an Office for Reparations; and stresses the need for these mechanisms to be independent, impartial, and transparent as well as led by individuals known for professionalism, integrity and impartiality;

7. Welcomes also the commitment by the Government of Sri Lanka to ensure that each transitional justice mechanism has the freedom to obtain assistance, including financial, material and technical assistance, from international partners, including the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights;

8. Encourages the Government of Sri Lanka to introduce effective security sector reforms as part of its transitional justice process that include ensuring that no scope exists for retention in or recruitment into the security forces of anyone credibly implicated in serious crimes involving human rights violations or abuses or violations of international humanitarian law including members of the security and intelligence units; and increasing training and incentives focused on the promotion and protection of human rights of all Sri Lankans;

9. Welcomes the Government of Sri Lanka’s recent passage of an updated Witness and Victim Protection Law, and urges the Government of Sri Lanka to strengthen these essential protections by making specific accommodations to effectively protect witnesses and victims participating in transitional justice processes who may be under threat due to information they have that allegedly implicates any public official, including members of the security forces or those with effective control over those forces.

10. Underscores the importance of the government taking additional steps on return of land previously taken  by defense forces to its rightful civilian owners, encouraging the acceleration of such transfers of land back to the rightful owners, and encouraging the government to undertake further efforts to tackle the considerable work that lies ahead in the areas of land use and ownership, in particular the ending of military involvement in civilian activities, the resumption of livelihoods and the restoration of normality to civilian life, and stressing the importance of the full participation of local populations, including representatives of civil society and minorities, in these efforts, (new language + HRC 25/1)

11. Reiterates its call upon the Government of Sri Lanka to implement effectively the constructive recommendations made in the report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission, and to take all necessary additional steps to fulfil its relevant legal obligations and commitment to initiate credible and independent actions to ensure justice, equity, accountability and reconciliation for all Sri Lankans; (HRC 25/1)

12. Urges the Government of Sri Lanka to investigate all alleged attacks by individuals and groups on journalists, human rights defenders, members of religious minority groups and other members of civil society, as well as on temples, mosques and churches, and to hold perpetrators of such attacks to account and to take steps to prevent such attacks in the future; (HRC 25/1)

13. Affirms the Government of Sri Lanka’s commitment to review and repeal the Prevention of Terrorism Act and replace it with anti-terrorism legislation in line with contemporary international best practices;

14. Welcomes the Government of Sri Lanka’s commitment to sign and ratify the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances without delay, and to begin issuing Certificates of Absence to the families of the missing as a temporary measure of relief;

15. Urges the Government of Sri Lanka to credibly investigate widespread allegations of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances, demilitarize the north and east of Sri Lanka, implement impartial land dispute resolution mechanisms, re-evaluate detention policies, strengthen formerly independent civil institutions, reach a political settlement on the devolution of power to the provinces, promote and protect the right of freedom of expression for all persons and enact rule of law reforms, (HRC 25/1)

16. Welcomes the Declaration of Peace proclaimed by the Government of Sri Lanka on 4 February 2015 and calls on the Government of Sri Lanka to review and, as appropriate, repeal or reform legislation and other measures enacted and implemented during the armed conflict and its aftermath so as to reflect the transition to peace and stability on the island and to ensure compliance with Sri Lanka’s international obligations,

17. Calls upon the new Government of Sri Lanka to reform its domestic law to ensure that it can effectively implement its own commitments, the recommendations made in the report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission, as well as the recommendations of the report by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights requested in resolution 25/1, including the investigation and prosecution of those most responsible for the full range of relevant crimes involving violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law;

18. Welcomes the Government of Sri Lanka’s commitment to release publicly previous Presidential Commission Reports such as the Udalagama and Paranagama reports by the end of this month, and calls for the release of the results of its investigations into alleged violations by security forces, including the attack on unarmed protesters in Weliweriya on 1 August 2013, and the report of 2013 by the court of inquiry of the Sri Lanka Army; (HRC 25/1)

19. Encourages the Government of Sri Lanka to develop a comprehensive plan and mechanism for preserving all existing records and documentation relating to human rights violations and abuses and violations of international humanitarian law, whether held by public or private institutions;

20. Urges the Government of Sri Lanka to fulfill its commitments on the devolution of political authority, which is integral to reconciliation and the full enjoyment of human rights by all members of its population; and encourages the Government of Sri Lanka to ensure that all Provincial Councils, including the Northern Provincial Council, are able to operate effectively, in accordance with the 13th amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka; (HRC 25/1 + new language)

21. Underlines that the credibility and success of transitional justice processes wherever they are established are enhanced by international assistance and expert involvement, and encourages the Government of Sri Lanka, the people of Sri Lanka, and the High Commissioner, as well as other relevant international organizations and experts, to work together to determine appropriate forms of international support for and engagement with Sri Lanka’s processes;

22. Encourages the government to address all reports of sexual and gender-based violence and torture, holding all perpetrators to account and drawing on relevant international assistance;

23. Requests the Office of the High Commissioner to assess and verify the human rights situation in Sri Lanka; to continue to assess progress on the implementation of OHCHR’s recommendations and other relevant processes related to reconciliation, accountability, and human rights; to present an oral update to the Human Rights Council at its thirty-third session, and a comprehensive report followed by discussion on the implementation of the present resolution at its thirty-fourth session;

24. Encourages the Government of Sri Lanka to continue to cooperate with special procedures mandate holders, to set a date for visits to the country by the UN Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances, and to respond formally to outstanding requests from other mandate holders, including long-standing requests (new language + HRC 25/1)

25. Encourages the Office of the High Commissioner and relevant special procedures mandate holders to provide, in consultation with and with the concurrence of the Government of Sri Lanka, advice and technical assistance on implementing the abovementioned steps; (HRC 25/1)

26. Takes note of the new Government of Sri Lanka’s commitment to cooperate with the Office of the High Commissioner in the implementation of the present resolution. (new language + HRC 25/1)

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Latest comments

  • 0
    1

    [Edited out] Please write instead of posting links – CT

    • 0
      0

      US wanted to help SL new government. But the UNHRC report on SL is too strong and it has become important considering what is taking place in Europe with Syrian refugees. They would want to prosecute Bashar al-Assad of Syria without an escape route.

      The timing of UNHRC report on SL is coming in at the worst time for SL. The resolution have to set an example to go after Bashar al-Assad of Syria.

      SL going to be in a predicament with no escape route. No country will sympathize with SL and only issue politically correct statements.

      Any resistance or non compliance by SL government will be followed by another resolution by UNHRC.

      Local SL politicians will keep beating the same old drum and will expect the results to be same.

      There are big issues taking place in the world related to human rights and refugee issues. Sri Lanka is a small country and just need to accept the fact that they are a small country. Looking for an exception is a wishful thinking.

  • 1
    2

    UN security council and economy sanction are the ultimate treatment to country like sri lanka. The internal judiciary in sri lanka is under Thajudeen’s grave even after jan 8th. Eventhough sl has no oil, US and other Security Council countries should add sri lanka to Syria or Sudan list.

  • 0
    0

    So Tamils get eelam now ?

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      6

      Tamils get Eelam because Sinhalese got Sinhalam. This beautiful island was in peace until Sinhalam took control of thsi island in 1948. Before that Eelam and Sinhalam were happily shared its beauty and its wealth happily. In 1948, Lord Buddha was in tears after the brutality of Sinhalam emerged and left this island in the hands brutal, unhumane, violent Sinhalam. Buddha is now thinking of re entering this island after seeing the sufferings of Tamils in the hands brutal Sinhalam.

  • 1
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    What this resolution means is that the OISL report which made far reaching recommendations including the request to set up hybrid court to investigate war crimes and crimes against humanity committed during the final stages of the war in 2009 will remain just a report.

    The highly emphasised call in the OISL Report asking Sri Lanka to “adopt specific legislation establishing an ad hoc hybrid special court, integrating international judges, prosecutors, lawyers and investigators, mandated to try war crimes and crimes against humanity, including sexual crimes and crimes committed against children, with its own independent investigative and prosecuting organ, defence office, and witness and victims protection programme” has gone missing in the draft resolution.

    Instead the draft resolution only “calls upon the new Government of Sri Lanka to reform its domestic law to ensure that it can effectively implement its own commitments, the recommendations made in the report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission, as well as the recommendations of the report by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights requested in resolution 25/1, including the investigation and prosecution of those most responsible for the full range of relevant crimes involving violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law”.

    The draft resolution wants only a domestic inquiry as clearly seen from the mild request to the Sri Lanka government to reform its domestic law to conduct purely a domestic inquiry into abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law. No call for international inquiry of any kind whether full or hybrid.

    There is no call either for the establishment of a permanent office for the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Sri Lanka which was highly emphasised in the OISL report.

    There is no call asking Sri Lanka to ratify the International Convention on the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances, the Additional Protocols to the Geneva Conventions and the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

    All these and other important recommendations in the OISL Report have been conveniently omitted in the draft resolution.

    As is usual in these types of UN resolutions, it uses terms such as “Welcomes”, “Encourages”,”Takes note”,”Underscores”,”Underlines”, “Requests” etc. which means nothing for Sri Lanka which has always resisted international intrusion into its internal affairs.

    LTTE Diaspora will be a very disappointed lot. They had high hopes of hauling Mahinda,Gotha and the military commanders before the ICC in Hague or at least before the proposed hybrid court. All those hopes are now dashed by the Americans who will ensure the passage of this innocuous resolution at the HRC.

    Why should the Americans do any favour to the LTTE Diaspora now that their man Ranil is in power in Sri Lanka? And, of course, Americans know well that TNA controlled by their men Sumanthiran and Sampanthan will always dance to their tune. In any case, TNA did not care for the LTTE cadres and the hapless Tamils caught in the battle front. Had they cared, TNA would have actively intervened at that time and tried to bring about a ceasefire and save the thousands of innocent Tamils from getting killed. They didn’t and the voices of TNA leaders were never heard. They even spurned the request of the then Indian National Security Advisor M K Narayanan to make a joint appeal with other Tamil leaders to the LTTE leader to lay down arms and save the Tamils caught up in the battle front.

  • 0
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    [Edited out]

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    The emerging imperialist india powered by “counter-insurgent specialist murderer criminal sutraslave ajith doval” just trying to replace the US role in Indian ocean. International terrorist america willbe sooner replaced by local terrorist india. the brahminical shameless failarmy of indian bureaucracy going to write stories & preach their failure as victory. The genocidal roles of Pro-american Malayali stooges like MasterKriminal narayan,sathan sangara menon & the real world villain vijay nambiar willbe going to be hidden. india, who secretly leads the entire mission2015 will not be going tobe questioned by the tamil idiots for now.

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    We are at an important juncture.The options open for SL government are limited.Either they will have to ignore the report and go ahead with their planned domestic probe to conclude the case.The down side is they will not be able to those cute the big fish due to possible repercussions like up rising of Southern nationalism which will not favour the present government.
    However if they go ahead with the proposed hybrid court,more international recognition will be given to that and the likely hood of finding real culprits are a possibility. Another dilemma we have now is whether the confusion of this investigation is a foregone one already.Are they after the heads of Rajapakse brothers.
    If their is a true need to find the truth the judges should be truly impartial and should not find conclusions to appease a segment of lobbying diaspora or media like channel 4.
    One of the important statement given recently by gen; Sarath Fonseka said the good name of the army should be restored by punishing few criminals who took law into their hands.There is a big truth in that and thousands of parents who mourn for their dead soldier children fighting a legitimate war will agree I am sure.Our armed forces are projected as the most barbaric vultures in the world.I think this far from being fair.
    A purely local mechanism will not get recognition due to the mockery of legal system created during MR times.Sadly it will take huge effort to come out of this hellhole dug by Rajapakse boys.
    If will be difficult to tread this storm as whatever the outcome is it is likely the rift is going to be wider and wider as long as these people continue to wash our dirty linen in public.
    For reconciliation both parties should admit crimes were committed at both ends and any investigation should be aiming at bringing a lasting solution to the problem.
    Simple witch hunting will not help.

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      ” Our armed forces are projected as the most barbaric vultures in the world ”

      This was/is how some of our Tamil speaking cousins spoke about ALL OF US to the rest of the world, even as they were carrying out barbaric acts in our land. It is therefore not surprising that a document primarily authored by a South African Tamil wholly signed up to the LTTE cause repeats such claims.

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    One big problem is that Wimal-Udaya-Dinesh-Vasu-Dayan will not accept any form of investigation (local, hybrid, foreign, anything) of alleged war criminals in the military. They praise these alleged war criminals to be heroes and saviours. Therefore they are using this opportunity to stir up as much trouble as they can. Mahinda Rajapaksa and his big guns are standing behind and inciting the loud mouths as his vanguard.

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