21 August, 2019

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Human Rights: Can The British High Commissioner In Sri Lanka Clarify?

By Rajeewa Jayaweera

Rajeewa Jayaweera

The British Government has welcomed the decision by Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) to co-sponsor the new UN Human Rights Council resolution which reaffirms to complete during the next two years, the country’s commitments undertaken when it co-sponsored UNHRC resolution 30/1 in October 2015.

A release issued by the British High Commission in Colombo states, GoSL has demonstrated its commitment to human rights, accountability and reconciliation, all important elements for a lasting political settlement for all communities in Sri Lanka.

Whilst acknowledging some improvements made since January 2015 in the field of Human Rights, the statement further emphasize the need for further progress and improvements, especially in the restoration of important democratic checks and balances, improvements in respect for freedoms of expression and movement, the return of some military-held land, the passing of legislation to establish an Office for Missing Persons, the ratification of the Convention on Enforced Disappearances and the initiation of a process of constitutional reform. It further refers to the need for continued support and encouragement from the international community, including through the UN Human Rights Council as important factors.Welcoming the work of the Consultation Task Force on Reconciliation Mechanisms, the statement urges GoSL to give due consideration to the recommendations of CTFRM.

Under Recommendations on the Mechanisms, item 24 states, “The CTF recommends a hybrid Court with a majority of national judges as well as a sufficient number of international judges. This will ensure at least one international judge per bench and pre-empt delays due to the absence of one or more judges. It also recommends international participation in the Office of the Special Counsel of prosecutors and investigators, in addition to the provision of technical assistance. There should be clear guidelines and criteria spelt out and made public in respect of all aspects of international participation. International participation should be phased out once trust and confidence in domestic mechanisms are established and when the required expertise and capacity has been built up, nationally.”

In April 2016, current Prime Minister Theresa May, then Home Secretary in Prime Minister David Cameron’s government was a strong advocate for Britain to withdraw from the European Convention on Human Rights, regardless of the outcome of the Brexit referendum. She is on record having stated, “The ECHR can bind the hands of parliament, adds nothing to our prosperity, makes us less secure by preventing the deportation of dangerous foreign nationals – and does nothing to change the attitudes of governments like Russia’s when it comes to human rights. So regardless of the EU referendum, my view is this: if we want to reform human rights laws in this country, it isn’t the EU we should leave but the ECHR and the jurisdiction of its court.”

Member states are permitted to derogate from the ECHR in times of war or public emergency under the rules of the Council of Europe, which oversees the Strasbourg-based institution. Member states who wish to avail of the facility of temporary derogation may do so by simply forwarding a letter in advance to the Secretary General of the European Council. With Brexit approved, Britain will no longer be constrained by ECHR conventions in their future campaigns.

During her speech triggering the Brexit exit process, Prime Minister Theresa May said, “We are going to make our own decisions and our own laws. We are going to take control of things that matter most to us………. We will take control of our laws and bring an end to the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice, in Britain. Leaving the European Union will mean that out laws will be made in Westminster, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast. And those laws will be interpreted by judges not in Luxembbourg, but in courts across this country………… We will control immigration so that we continue to attract the brightest and the best to work or study in Britain, but manage the process properly so that our immigration system serves the national interest……..

Based on these statements, the views of the British government headed by Prime Minister Theresa May in terms of jurisdiction of courts, in making and interpreting laws and Human Rights is crystal clear. They need necessarily be British.

In this back drop, the statement by the British government on the developments at the recently concluded 34th session of UNHRC related to Resolution 30/1 and urging GoSL to give due consideration to the participation of foreign judges, prosecutors and investigators as recommended by CTFRM, released by the British High Commission in Colombo, is a direct contradiction of British government’s own policies and justification of Brexit.

Could the British High Commissioner in Colombo clarify, why does the British government wish for Sri Lanka, the opposite of what it wants for itself?

 

 

 

 

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Latest comments

  • 11
    8

    Rajeewa Jayaweera -please stick to writing about Sri Lankan airline’s mishaps such as crews bending under the barbed wire.

    don’t venture in to areas that are beyond your comprehension

    • 2
      3

      Sounds like an ex LTTE terrorist without a brain to comprehend!

      • 1
        1

        This is breaking news – Eusense claims Rajeewa Jayaweera is an ex LTTE terrorist without a “brain”.

        Does not add up.

        LTTE was admired world over for their cunning intelligence adnthriftiness.

        • 2
          2

          Dear Rajeeva Jayaweera,
          I agree with you that the world is full of double standards and Srilanka is not exempt from this practice. Please put your house in order before pointing your finger at others. Since Independence Srilanka has practiced double standards when it comes to Sinhalese and Tamils. Several Tamils with minor offences or others with trumped up false charges are languishing in jails for more than 15 years, while all the Sinhala perpetrators of crime against Tamils are walking free without being bought to justice. Secondly Srilanka is a minion in world affairs and these super powers do not take Srilanka seriously. So however much you bark, it will be ignored.

          • 1
            0

            Dr Gnana S,

            “Several Tamils with minor offences or others with trumped up false charges are languishing in jails for more than 15 years, while all the Sinhala perpetrators of crime against Tamils are walking free without being bought to justice.”

            I am sorry to see that you continue with your claims. In this country court cases and remand prison take a long time for all of us not only Tamils. This is not UK as you may think.

            Not ALL the “Sinhala perpetrators of crime against Tamils are walking free without being bought to justice”. I have provided links to some sentences as evidence before.

            Are not the Tamil perpetrators of crime against Tamils and all others also often not walking free?

  • 7
    14

    International community have no say in Sri Lanka’s matters. But international community can help re-settle Tamils in their motherland Tamil Nadu.

    The root of the Tamil Problem in Sri Lanka are that British colonialists dumped millions slave coolies from South India to work on their plantations and their divide and rule policies.

    – Military-held lands must be given to landless native Sinhalese.

    – No Tamil is missing, they are all living in Europe, Canada, Australia, etc.

    Multiculturalism is already a proven disaster in Europe. So, in order to prevent future ethnic clashes in SL, the new constitution must be all about Sinhalese-Buddhist.

    Tamil Nadu will take care of Tamils, Muslim countries will take a GOOD care of Muslims, so Sinhale (Sri Lanka) MUST take care of Sinhalese.

    • 3
      1

      And you are a Sinhalese with the name JOHN.

      • 3
        1

        The first bunch of slave coolies to be dumped in Srilanka from the neighbouring India are Vijaya and his 700 catchers. The root cause of the problem in Srilanka is that and nothing else.

  • 6
    7

    Mr. Rajeeva Jayaweera,
    The answer is very simple and straightforward. Britain has no pending war crime charges from the UN or the ECHR. If you want to compare Britain an Sri Lanka in this respect, learn the difference by looking into what Sri Lanka did to the minorities for the last several decades and what Britain did. Do you see suffering victims of war in Britain too? If not you are wasting your time.

    • 2
      1

      Richard,

      Britain may not have pending war crime charges from the UN or the ECHR at the moment but soon they will get some from Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, etc for the wars Blair and Cameron choreographed behind the scene.

    • 2
      3

      richard
      Do you know why “Britain has no pending war crime charges from the UN or the ECHR” even after all the war crimes committed in Iraq and Afghanistan?
      If you can’t figure that out you are an imbecile!

  • 6
    2

    Rajeev Jayaweera’s fears and prejudices about India needs to be acknowledged. He is not a particular well-wisher of India but he is
    more concerned with Sri Lanka’s good. This is conceded. The fact is there is a degree of duplicity in almost all countries suffering an adversarial relationship with another. One is reminded of the celebrated exclamation of Mexican President Porfirio Diaz “Poor Mexico. So far away from God and so close to the USA” Sri Lanka finds itself in a similar plight.

    The option is not to give reasons to India to feel unsafe about us. The present Chinese equation creates situations for SL to err. We have to be extra careful. One way out is to settle the National Question and make the Tamils to feel, if not equal partners, at least not as unequal outsiders. It seems to me the Sinhala political spectrum, excluding the Rajapakse family and the hordes of thieves with them, are ready to arrive at a workable formulae. The problem is the other power bloc – the Mahanayakas. It is influential men in Sinhala civil life who should work to create the necessary openings for a break-through with the priests who have a historical anti-Tamil bias.

    Let us not blame India for all our ills. Let us remember India has come to our assistance many a time. It is time we showed some backbone and originality.

    Backlash

  • 6
    6

    Height of Hypocrisy!

    The two countries, USA and UK that initiated the Resolution at UNHRC proposing to investigate war crimes, crimes against humanity and violation of international law have committed more war crimes, crimes against humanity and violated international law than any other country in the world. Some of the persons who are responsible for committing these crimes are: George W. Bush (Senior), George W. Bush (Junior), Bill Clinton, Barak Obama, Dick Cheney, Hilary Clinton, John Kerry, Tony Blair, David Cameron.

    This reminds me the story about mother crab and baby crabs!

  • 7
    6

    For those who try to brand Sinhala Buddhists as racists, I suggest that they should go to UK and spend some time to see the racism prevailing among English Christian people.

    Recently, I spent a couple of months in UK with my daughter who is married to a white British man. Their children do not have white skins like the father but very close but their classmates categorize them as ‘Black’. My 10 year old granddaughter told that her friend said ‘Your mother is black. She is stupid’. My daughter told me how subtle discrimination take place in her work place. When she went to school to pick children a white woman had passed a remark, ’these bloody Asians come to rob our men’. According to my daughter, jealousy prevailing among white women, particularly towards non-white people who are doing well, is unbelievable.

    I did not count how many times people shouted at me ‘Pakie go home’. Some of them were school children. Soon after Brexit decision, a Polish person was beaten to death and several Polish people were attacked. Recently, in Croydon youths had attacked a refugee.

    In seventies, I was in UK for four years and experienced racial discrimination. I thought with the generation change, situation might get better but I do not think it has happened. In a TV discussion, a politician (I cannot remember the name) admitted that in spite of attempts to eliminate racism, it exist in British society.

    In Sinhala we have a saying ‘anunge ehe thiyena paralaya penawa namuth thamange ehe thiyena indikatuwa penne nehe’. (one notice the rafter in other person’s eye but do not notice the needle in his own eye)

    • 6
      5

      Eable Eye,
      Does the British govt. organize pogroms against the Scottish minority in England? No, on the other hand they let them vote to leave the UK if they want to.
      That’s a civilized country.
      Sri Lankan public and govt are racist. In UK only the public is racist, but they have to be careful not to get caught. In Sri Lanka we have Buddhist thugs like Elle Gunawansa and Gnanasara making racist speeches, but nothing happens.

      • 2
        3

        yusuf, stop being an idiot! Sri Lanka was a civilized country before British dumped millions of kallathonies.

        There is no racism in Sri Lanka. Not letting minorities to harm the Sri Lanka’s Sinhala-Buddhist character and Sinhala-Buddhist identity, and not letting minorities to invade Sinhala-Buddhist-Sri Lanka is definitely NOT racism.

        Lots of British officials have admitted that Briton is constitutionally racist.

        If not for the guardians such as Elle Gunawansa thero and Gnanasara thero, Muslim menace such as Asroff and Badudeen could have turned Sinhale(Sri Lanka) in to a Pigsty.

        • 1
          2

          John’
          Oh yes Sri Lanka was so civilised that some women were forbidden to wear blouse. Yes, and some children are taken to temples and abused Is that your civilisation? And did you forget the Buddhist monk who shot the prime minister? That guy was not as bad as Gunawansa and Gandasara.
          Why do you send your wife and daughter to Gulf if Muslims are so bad? Because muslims have bigger d***s?

    • 4
      2

      ” Sinhala we have a saying ‘anunge ehe thiyena paralaya penawa namuth thamange ehe thiyena indikatuwa penne nehe’. (one notice the rafter in other person’s eye but do not notice the needle in his own eye)

      That’s not a SINHALA saying, its from the BIBLE, claimed to have been told by Jesus.
      What next, claim that Jesus was Sinhala Buddhist? LOL

  • 8
    3

    “Could the British High Commissioner in Colombo clarify, why does the British government wish for Sri Lanka, the opposite of what it wants for itself?”
    Simple, my dear Mr.Jayaweera.
    Britain can sustain itself economically. Sri Lanka cannot
    Sri Lanka has to go begging for loans (conditions apply, as they say at Cargills)
    Sri Lanka has to export to these same pesky Western countries. Again, conditions apply.
    Until we can export everything to China, we have to live in the real world.

    • 2
      2

      Mr. old
      You must be talking about sanctions. That is not going to work with SL. You need to figure out how!

      • 2
        2

        Eusense,
        We can survive without them, yes. But which Sinhala Buddhist is ready to live without his mod cons like mobile phone, fancy car, fast food, a/c, internet, TV, fancy clothes, Chinese gadgets, etc? All paid for by the hard work of women slaving away in the Gulf and in garment factories and tea plantations?
        When will the men learn to do an honest day’s work for a reasonable wage instead of sitting around in 3-wheelers or strutting around in fancy uniforms? I wish that day would come.

  • 6
    2

    “Could the British High Commissioner in Colombo clarify, why does the British government wish for Sri Lanka, the opposite of what it wants for itself?” you goof, for the simple reason that Mahinda Rajapakse gave an assurance to the UN that he will provide solutions to the north based on 13th Amendment and didn’t, the GOSL in 2015 co-sponsored & adopted UN resolution 30/1 and in 2017 again gave complete re-assurance and adoption of the same but seeking an extension of 2 years to fully implement it. This resolution was not co-sponsored and agreed to be adopted by the grandmothers association of Britain but by your own blooming farts in Sri Lanka. Regarding issues concerning Britain, they will agree or disagree to sign resolutions or not, and that is their strength, they will even decide to leave EU (Brexit) and still standup in strength, they will take in thousands of immigrants from other countries who are being harassed or looking for a better life and grow in strength (for what you and your farts cannot do or attain) and still when a bomb goes off in London the British will not go around mass killing looting of immigrant minorities like we are famous in Sri Lanka, they also do not sing sovereignty and patriotic songs while signing off part of Hambantota for 99 years to China. Try smoking your own fart first before trying to smell others.

    • 1
      5

      They must be playing sending drones and arming isis against Asad , Saddam Hussain and you name it every despot who serve their agenda when it suite them?
      Can wage wars without UN mandates?
      The multi polar world will ensure independence of the world. They still think we are their colonies!

      • 4
        2

        Mr.Srinath,
        “They must be playing sending drones and arming isis against Asad , Saddam Hussain and you name it every despot who serve their agenda when it suite them?”
        They are not doing this to their own people. That’s the difference, my dear.

      • 4
        2

        Typical ignorant comment from a local yakko. The use of the term despot answers whether such persons are worthy to rule those nations. One needs to comment on Saddam and his Iraq and Gaddafi and his Libya only after firsthand knowledge of ground realities during their governance. Both those countries never had an opposition and even a slight activity of voicing a concern against the government or leader can lead to death, yes all those leaders had many “white van one way transport” services and people are forced to tow the line of the leader and his family members even if they are wrong. These “despot” leaders used their oil money to fund terrorist groups such as Taliban, Hamas primarily to de-stabilize other countries of that region, such as Kuwait, Egypt, Bahrain, Afghanistan etc…. and thereafter moved on to other countries that threatened their criminal existence. The only democratically ruled nations in the UN security council are USA, Britain and USA – the reputation of Russian and China are well known. It is a pity that countries with exemplary human records like Japan, South Africa, India, South Korea, Brazil, Argentina have not been inducted into the SC in place of notorious human rights countries such as China and Russia. The UN mandate to wage wars and eliminate “despots” and their state sponsored terrorism that could threaten other nation’s lies in the ulterior attitudes of China and Russia. The world is no more a planet where nations can subjugate their citizens and minorities like what is happening right now in Burma and other right minded nations to watch, grin and wait. Watch grin, wait and even support and clap is okay for countries like China and Russia, because they have their own agendas “you scratch my back and I will scratch yours” attitude. Nobody is a colony in today’s world, it is those leaders who have failed their nations who prop up the slogan of “threats, sovereignty and patriotism” to cover up their corruption, criminalities and despotism.

    • 2
      4

      spark
      People can change their minds any time. Theresa May did so. Why cant MS do that?

      • 1
        1

        TM can change her mind but UK is a country that has the strength to face consequences from that. If MS or SL was to make such adventures of “change of mind”, it needs to be seen whether this country has the strength. China refused to accept SL repayment of debt to equity, but finally agreed due to desperate pleas on their terms share of 80% 99 year lease on Hambantota Port, a total sell out on the so called “sovereignty” balked by many in this nation.

        • 1
          1

          spark
          Looks like you are so concerned about SL! I know you are a separatist Tamil wishing disaster for SL because your brutal terrorist group LTTE was wiped out. Don’t worry SL survived for thousands of years. A bunch of terrorist Tamils are not going to be allowed to do harm to my country.
          UNHCR has lost all its credibility. No country is going to listen to them anymore until they bring prosecution of US, UK, China and Russia for human right violations.

          • 1
            1

            Typical unsubstantiated allegations is common disease of the Sinhalese. Yes I am a concerned citizen of Sri Lanka with true patriotism in mind, but not the sort of farts like you carry. No I am not a separatist and in fact not even a blooming Tamil nor a shameless Sinhalese as a matter of fact. Sri Lanka will certainly survive like all other nations such as Switzerland (best country to live in) and Sierra Leone (worst country to live in) where her destiny will lie between ignorant fools like you who will make it like Sierra Leone and still proudly survive for 1000 years and people like me who want to see it beat Switzerland. UNHCR credibility is questioned by the Sinhalese for obvious reasons, similar to a criminal questioning the rights, methods and jurisdiction of a policemen who is investigating his crime. Imagination is running wild, therefore keep your blooming eyes, ears and arse hole open for the next 1000 years and let me know when “No country is going to listen to them anymore (USA, UK, China & Russia)” and I will buy you a bottle of Kassipu on that day for u celebrate yakko style.

            • 0
              0

              Learnt a lot from/about you!

  • 3
    1

    I guess Rajeeva did not read the part, government is targetting lawyers who bring in civil cases against army and there active measures to protect army in UK!

    While we have to justify our use of force, they can aid terror groups to raise funds, send drones to massacre villages!

    May be we should have nuclear weapons so no one will touch us!

    • 5
      2

      The drones that have massacred villages by western forces have not been denied and each and everyone of them has been admitted and in fact done right in front of recording cameras and journalists, thus the repercussions of such activities will be fully faced by those nations. Those war zones are transparent and well monitored by the world unlike what happened in the North, where all journalists and NGO’s were evacuated before the culling of innocent civilians happened.
      Before SL can think of nuclear weapons, they need learn to manufacture their own 3-wheeler, depending on India on that. Remember SL is a nation where one minister promised the locating of gas in the Mannar belt and it was made a matter of time before the nation is resplendent. This minister made millions just bogusly trying to find that gas. Then we had another “engineer” minister who kept boiling polythene converting it into petrol during his election campaign and made it known that it was the greatest discovery to make this country not importing anymore petrol saving precious foreign exchange, finally to realize the simple calculation it requires more money to manufacture that by-product from polythene. Then we had a home grown space scientist who was almost going to shoot our own rocket to space not knowing that we even cannot manufacture a bicycle on our own. The space scientist and his family is now noted to having special skills in robbing the nation than Space Technology. When 99% of the yakkos in this country are downright crooks who talk and pen rubbish like this fart, what more does this nation need to develop?

      • 2
        2

        Spark

        Your confidence in the graciousness and honesty of the West is touching !

        I didn’t know that drone killings were/are carried out in front of reporters

        Can you tell me please., how many Yemeni’s have the US admitted to killing ? How many Iraqis ? Syrians ?

        Then perhaps you can tell me why the US does not recognise the ICC

  • 3
    1

    Rajeewa Jayaweera is flying the “Bees do it and so why not we?” kite.

    During the early part of last century superiority of white race was accepted almost as an axiom. This created the Austrian soldier who said “Aryan-whites were the master race”. Rest is history.

    Several Nobel Laureates castigated the infamous abuse of human rights by GoSL. Were they wrong to do that Rajeewa?

    Rajeewa is accepting guilt with the suggestion that “Only the perfect may point out imperfections”. This is impossible to satisfy.

    One may well ask as to why Rajeewa is draped in western attire.

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