13 August, 2020

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Implement The UNHRC Resolution

By R. Sampanthan

R. Sampanthan

What happened to unarmed civilians in violation of human rights and humanitarian laws must not be confused with legitimate actions taken by the State against armed combatants carrying on an armed struggle against the State. The distinction between these two situations is clearly defined in humanitarian laws and human rights laws, and the standards of judgement pertaining to the applicability of the said two laws are clearly recognized internationally. I found my Friends, in the course of the speeches they made earlier the day, referring to war heroes. I do not think all war heroes were engaged in committing violations of international humanitarian laws and human rights laws but some of them undoubtedly committed crimes against both those laws.

Can the cases pertaining to journalist, Lasantha Wickrematunge, cartoonist, Prageeth Ekneligoda, five students murdered in Trincomalee when they were standing on the beachfront or the 17 aid workers killed in Muttur be swept under the carpet merely because the persons who are accused of those crimes are members of the armed forces; so called war heroes? If those crimes cannot be swept under the carpet merely for the reason that those acts were committed by war heroes, how can violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law which are crimes against humanity committed in 2008-2009 be swept under the carpet? This was impunity at its zenith.

Speech made by R. Sampanthan Yesterday in Parliament on UNHRC resolution:

Mr. Presiding Member, this Resolution has been moved by the Joint Opposition.

The objective of the Resolution is the attempted repudiation of the Report of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and also the Resolution adopted by the Human Rights Council.

Unfortunately, I do not think such steps are within the competence of this honourable House and I might, perhaps, safely say that it is not the will of the present House. I might say very clearly that the Sri Lankan State is bound by the Resolution adopted by the Human Rights Council and that it is the bounden duty of the Sri Lankan State to implement that Resolution. We should really work towards how that can be achieved without any harm being done to this country. That should be our objective.

I do not want to approach this matter in a spirit of confrontation. I want to approach it from the perspective of what would be in the best interests of the country and all its people while ensuring truth and justice.       

The causes and events that led to this situation, to this Resolution being adopted, occurred during the tenure of the former Government. The present Government took over when conclusions, decisions, had been arrived at by the UN Human Rights Council. Not having been able to contain the situation despite being given every opportunity from 2012, the former Government could not have contained the situation when decisions had been arrived at in 2015 by the UN Human Rights Council.

The former Government was given every opportunity to implement its own LLRC -Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission- recommendations and conduct its own domestic investigations in 2012, 2013 and up to 2014. It was the policy of confrontation and refusal to participate that led to the Resolution adopted in 2015. This is undeniable and the former Government must accept responsibility for that situation.

This Resolution is frequently referred to as a Resolution against Sri Lanka. I do not agree with that view. It is a Resolution dealing with violations of human rights laws and humanitarian laws committed by both parties to the conflict, the State and the armed rebel group, the LTTE. It is not a Resolution against Sri Lanka. It is a Resolution pertaining to certain acts, not all acts, committed by the two parties to the conflict.

One must not forget that this whole process commenced when the then President, His Excellency Mahinda Rajapaksa, gave a commitment to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, His Excellency Ban Ki-moon, on the 26th of May 2009 when the Secretary-General visited Sri Lanka, to the effect that His Excellency Mahinda Rajapaksa, the President, and the Sri Lankan Government would address the question of accountability. That was a commitment very clearly made by the then President to the Secretary-General of the UN when the Secretary-General came here. His Excellency Mahinda Rajapaksa undoubtedly knew what he was doing because he himself had gone to Geneva in the late 1980s – in 1988 and 1989 – to seek the intervention of the UN Human Rights body when there were grave violations of human rights and humanitarian laws in the South of this country, when Sinhala civilian youth and Sinhala people were being slaughtered in their thousands, indeed tens of thousands,  at that point of time. The only difference is that what happened in 2008-2009 happened in the North.

Nobody is complaining on behalf of the armed combatants. His Excellency Mahinda Rajapaksa did not complain on behalf of armed combatants when he went to Geneva in 1988 and 1989. He only complained about what happened to civilians. The UN Human Rights Council is also dealing with what happened to civilians. In fact, simultaneously investigations have been conducted against the armed combatants about their own violations of human rights laws and humanitarian laws also against civilians. This culture of impunity should not continue. It should come to an end.

What happened to unarmed civilians in violation of human rights and humanitarian laws must not be confused with legitimate actions taken by the State against armed combatants carrying on an armed struggle against the State. The distinction between these two situations is clearly defined in humanitarian laws and human rights laws, and the standards of judgement pertaining to the applicability of the said two laws are clearly recognized internationally. I found my Friends, in the course of the speeches they made earlier the day, referring to war heroes. I do not think all war heroes were engaged in committing violations of international humanitarian laws and human rights laws but some of them undoubtedly committed crimes against both those laws.

Can the cases pertaining to journalist, Lasantha Wickrematunge, cartoonist, Prageeth Ekneligoda, five students murdered in Trincomalee when they were standing on the beachfront or the 17 aid workers killed in Muttur be swept under the carpet merely because the persons who are accused of those crimes are members of the armed forces; so called war heroes? If those crimes cannot be swept under the carpet merely for the reason that those acts were committed by war heroes, how can violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law which are crimes against humanity committed in 2008-2009 be swept under the carpet? This was impunity at its zenith.

Sir, no one should be allowed to confuse between the execution of legitimate duties by a government and the wanton killing of unarmed civilians in furtherance of the political agendas of persons holding high office. Unless this culture is brought to an end, it will continue and that must not be allowed.

What happened in the South in 1988 – 1989 and in the North in 2008 – 2009, are crimes against humanity.  No country, Sir, can continuously disregard such crimes.

As a result of its short-sighted policies and not being inclusive in exercising powers of governance and not being inclusive in sharing sovereignty that is vested in all the people of this country, our country has faced catastrophic situations. We need to retrieve ourselves from this dire situation.

Full and expeditious implementation of the UN Human Rights Council Resolution will be the first step in that direction. Engaging in devious tactics to delay or deny the process will – I respectfully submit – be positively harmful to the future of this country.

Thank you, Sir.

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    [Edited out] Comments should not exceed 300 words.Please read our Comments Policy for further details.

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      sach, the old fart used to continuously hit his head on the wall at parliament so that MR1 and clan would have mercy on him now as leader of unlawful opposition he is only reaffirming that the world’s a stage…….perhaps he is craving for presidents award as best actor. in a generation.

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        MP Sampanthan—-Why do you want to start from the last phase of the war? All the killings carried out by bloodthirsty Prabhakaran starting from Duraiappa, should be investigated first. —– You are shedding crocodile tears for terrorists turned civilians. —— The UNHRC Resolution is illegal. Neither Cabinet nor the Parliament were aware of its contents until it was tabled at the behest of PM and the FM. The Government doesn’t have a mandate to implement its proposals. —— What human rights with bloodthirsty terrorists? LTTE was not a rebel group as whitewashed by you, but the “World’s Most Deadliest Terrorist Group at the time with Land/Air/Sea power plus the world’s first Suicidal Army”. When our Army had to fight against a well trained ruthless terrorist group which had “30 year experience in Guerrilla War”, whatever happened during that period is connected to the war. Those people didn’t die in peacetime. They died during the war.—- You can’t single out any incidents and claim human rights for some people, while admitting that the Government Army had every right to kill terrorists.—— Indeed, our people are war heroes. Twenty-Thirty Thousands of them had to sacrifice their lives in order for you to be alive today to talk against them. —– If our war heroes who are alive today are held responsible, now that the Leader and the frontline LTTE terrorists are no more, you and your TNA should also be held responsible for the crimes committed by savage Prabhakaran as “TNA was LTTE’s Political Arm”. You are right, your so called “impunity” should first apply to you and TNA. You knowingly aided and abetted Terrorists by being their Political Arm. As you are alive and Prbhakaran is no more, you and TNA are answerable for all the civilians massacred by LTTE.

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    Do war heroes commit murder of innocent citizens far away from the war zone.

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      The man who was responsible for all the Tamil mess was Nandicadal- Prabakaran.

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        Johnny Baby————“”The man who was responsible for all the Tamil mess was Nandicadal- Prabakaran.”” ————-Yet he won a war and two elections for Mahinda. Is Mahinda eternally grateful to VP and worship him as the sun god? Perhaps he does.

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          “… he won a war and two elections for Mahinda”
          How stupid are these so called Tamil leaders??

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      buffon, the world is a stage…………..

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      yes, in Iraq, Libya, Syria thousands of civilians die at the war heroes of the WEST.

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      Not at all, but Tamil terrorists do!
      War heroes prevented murder of more innocent citizens by eliminating Tamil suicide terrorists attacks far away from the war zone.

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    The long awaited coup is round the corner. Sorry if this sounds pessimistic.

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    Sri Lanka’s confusion of “Zero’s” and “Hero’s”.

    If one check the economic standings of these top so called “War Hero’s” before the war and after the war, and how they financed their children’s and loved ones education overseas one will soon realize what kind or hero’s they were.

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    R. Sampanthan You can’t have the cake and eat it too. You have never seen it better at the cost of the lost lives.Laws are for lesser men and you are not a man of right conduct stupid village lout. You and your racist party were and are part of the problem that caused the civilian deaths so now you need a solution from hell? A man of right conduct would have resigned from a racist party then joined the mainstream and worked on lost rights. See what the racist muslims are up against today? You are another Trinco village demala greedy to the core. “””/implement-the-unhrc-resolution”” So I would gladly say F you and your rassam and I hope your mean term as oppositions before the end of the year.

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    Sri Lankan Hero’s and what they do for you:

    “Presidential Commission of Inquiry to investigate and inquire into serious acts of fraud, corruption and abuse of power, state resources and privileges has decided to question former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa and former senior army officers on dismantling machines at the former Cement Factory at Kankesanthurai and selling them as scrap.

    Former Army Commander Lt Gen Daya Ratnayake is scheduled to be questioned by the Commission of Inquiry today (7). LT Gen Ratnayake has been asked to be present before the commission at 10 am today.

    The dismantling of the factory which is located in a High Security Zone, began after the end of the war in May 2009 and the opening of the A-9 Road to the South. Once the A-9 Road reopened, the Kankesanthurai Cement Factory’s machinery began to be dismantled for scrap. Several top brass of the defence ministry and top army officials have been accused of selling the parts of machine for scrap iron and earning millions of rupees.

    The Kankesanthurai Cement factory, which is one of the pioneer cement manufacturers, was commissioned in 1950.”

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    A very good speech. But, it is an appeasement to distinguish between soldiers who committed atrocities and war heroes who carried out legitimate functions. The distinction is not tenable. There was a duty on the part of the “war heroes” to prevent the commission of atrocities by their subordinates as well as their peers. Command complicity arises from such failure. Let us not make this distinction. As with the killings of the Sinhalese young in 1988 JVP uprisings, the killings of Tamil civilians in successive incidents including Mullivaikal implicates all army personnel present in personal responsibility. This may be politically incorrect but legally accurate. There is always a duty to disobey an illegal order and firing of civilians involves illegal orders implicating all “war heroes”

    As regards the liability of the members of the LTTE, they are without doubt liable for the killings of innocent civilians. The extent of their brutality was great. But, it does not condone the atrocities of the armed forces. The members of the LTTE are liable under the laws of Sri Lanka. Why has the government not prosecuted Kumar Pathmanathan and Karuna yet? These are mysteries.

    Sri Lanka needs a deterrence against such types of behavior. Only an international criminal court can provide it.

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    Couldn’t Mr Sampathar stop his God Son and his Tamil Terrorists committing crimes against Sinhala Buddhist, innocent civilians in remote parts of the country……. Those were the real inhabitants because they were poor rural Mums, Dads Grand Mas Grand Dads Samanera Bikkus and even Invalids who couldn’t run away from maruading Tamil Child Soldiers , wielding Butther Knives , and LTTE Black Tigers and Brown Tigers emptying their AK 47s….. ..Didn’t Mr Vellar Sampathar use these fully armed LTTE cadres to escort his TNA Candidates to do house to house visits to do campaiging for Elections then?……..May be those Human Rights abuses and the abusers have been pardoned by the UN ……….

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      KASmaalam K A Sumanasekera “”Couldn’t Mr Sampathar stop his God Son and his Tamil Terrorists committing crimes against Sinhala Buddhist, innocent civilians in remote parts of the country””” ———————–Trinco Sam couldn’t/wouldn’t for two simple reasons. Sam found VP colour, race, gender, caste, region ………….. blind and he killed everything that breathed and moved on two legs, …………… Therefore VP was not a racist but a psychopath like Gota or Rohana. Secondly even if he wanted to he couldn’t simply because the Hindians, Premadasa and his armed forces (who were hiding under the skirts of their women folks) and MR were overtly and covertly supplying everything that was needed for the survival/expansion of LTTE. ——————————- I envy you for your selective memory. Does malt help you to remember selectively or the misplaced loyalty to the war criminals?

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        NV, my selective memory tells me that he asked the world to accept LTTE (who killed everything that breathed and moved on two legs ) as the sole representative of Tamils. There are many apologists who defend his behavior during the LTTE but what they are indirectly implying is that he was a coward or greedy of his political career. Unlike KP he doesn’t seem to repent either. Please tell him that UNHRC cannot create good will among the people. —-Soma

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    UNHRC Resolutions were written by non other than Eelamist buffoons, all Husein did was sign the crappy resolution. ————————————————————————————————————————————————————— There is NO implementation of meaningless resolutions or commission, NO federalism, NO autonomy, NO self determination , NO police or land powers, NO hybrid courts, NO foreign judges, NO removing of Army camps, and NO merger of North and Eastern provinces. SINHALESE HAVE SUFFERED ENOUGH because of damn minorities. It is time to get tough on ANTI-SOCIAL PROBLEMATIC minorities. SO, minorities must SHUT UP, PUT UP, INTEGRATE, or GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE. ————————————————————————————————————————————————————– Sinhalese must be Sri Lanka’s sole official language, Tamil medium education must be stopped. To be a Sri Lankan citizen they must be able to speak Sinhalese.

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    Make Hindia happy. Make Tamils happy. Make TNA happy. Make Muslims happy. Sinhla apeople be good buddhists. Prosecute all the Generals and soldiers who killed suicide bombers and black tigers. Implement UNHCR and make LTTE rump happy. that is democracy. Any one else ?. Ah., arrest buddhist monks who talk against muslims.

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    “This Resolution is frequently referred to as a Resolution against Sri Lanka. I do not agree with that view. It is a Resolution dealing with violations of human rights laws and humanitarian laws committed by both parties to the conflict, the State and the armed rebel group, the LTTE.”

    Very good idea. Sri Lankan Government should insist that the human rights violations committed by LTTE should be investigated first because the Government launched a military campaign against a terrorist group. The Government has a legitimate right to take such action. They should identify the LTTE cadres who committed these violations and now hiding in countries of ‘Para Suddas’ taking new identities; bring them to Sri Lanka and try them. Bring Adele Balasingham too. According to the way with UN Tribunals have performed in other countries, this will drag on for at least ten years. Here are some of the major LTTE terrorist activities they should investigate. ATTACK, YEAR, DEATH TOLL: Kent and Dollar Farm massacres (1984, 62); Kokilai massacre (1984, 11); Anuradhapura massacre (1985, 146); Air Lanka Flight 512 (1986, 21); Habarana bus massacre (1987, 127); Central Bus Station Bombing (1987, 13); Aranthalawa Massacre (1987, 35); Massacre of Police officers (1990, 600); Kattankudy mosque massacre (1990, 147); Assassination of Ranjan Wijeratne (1991, 19); Assassination of Rajiv Gandhi (1991, 15); Palliyagodella massacre (1991, 109); Assassination of Ranasinghe Premadasa (1993, 11); Assasination of Gamini Disanayake (1994, 52); Kallarawa massacre (1995, 42); Eastern Sri Lanka massacre (1995, 120); Central Bank Bombing (1995, 91); Dehiwala Train Bombing (1996, 64); Lion Air Flight 602 (1998, 55); Temple of the Tooth Attack (1998, 17); Gonagala massacre (1999, 54); Assassination of C.V.Gunaratne (2000, 22); Kebithigollewa massacre (2006, 66); Digampathana bombing (2006, 103); Gomarankadawala massacre (2006, 6); Air Raid on Colombo (2009, 2)

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    In those days during LTTE times, Mr. Sambanthan was scared to death. He was only seen and not heard. Now, as the Sinhala Mahvamsa mindset is so laid back and forgiving, Sambanthan is exploiting Tamils.

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    “Do war heroes commit murder of innocent citizens far away from the war zone.”
    Lord Krishna caused this to Kanthari”s Children

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      Buffon, you are a twisted Chameleon from crusader faith!
      The purple one only took away the venom of the snake and decapitated it but did not kill thereby let the children play by the tree that the snake came too.

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      These so called “Hero’s” are rapists and pedophiles who did not stop in Sri Lanka but did the same thing in Haiti’.

      “From 2004 to 2007, 134 peacekeepers from Sri Lanka operated a child sex ring, luring children on the poverty-stricken island with candy and bits of cash, according to the AP. After a U.N. report incriminated them, most were sent home, but none faced jail time.”

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    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

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    These war criminals enjoy the best life for killing innocent. Perhaps might be find fault during their dementia stage so near to their life end even their they ll get the best care

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    Sri Lanka has always been a feudal society that respected loyalty above fairness or justice. The foreign colonial powers attempted to install legal systems that seem fairer and equitable; yet many of those laws are applied only to politically or socially uncompromised, non-aligned citizens, but not to people whose loyalty or regard for (however misguided) are expedient for power to be exercised.

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      they way it is applied at pirates paradise is the same as mother of all pirates – the boys and the girls; he’s alright! Pirates of Lanka never invented anything even a social system.

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    Both the US and UK who were proclaiming themselves to be the top-notch humaitarians (!!!???) are now striving to get rid of Human Rights laws. Great goings ! Let old fool Sampanthan holding the torch for US and UK now eat his own s**t !!!

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    Jackal opposition wants to score some points among sinhala voters by saying “we repudiate the UNHCR resolution”. So, Mr, Sambanthan picked the opposutnity and says, Investigate even the Tamil deaths by natural causes.

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