24 September, 2020

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ITJP Questions Mahinda Samarasinghe’s Appointment To Overlook OMP Recommendations

The International Truth and Justice Project expressed strong doubts about Sri Lanka’s seriousness on the Office of Missing Persons (OMP), questioning the appointment of Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe to overlook the implementation of its recommendations.

Mahinda Samarasinghe

Samarasinghe, an ally of President Maithripala Sirisena, was recently appointed the head of a 10 member Cabinet sub-committee overlooking the implementation of OMP’s interim recommendations.

“The Government of Sri Lanka is undermining the Office of Missing Persons by appointing a politician to implement its recommendations who has denied war crimes, including enforced
disappearances, and who allegedly intimidated a victim,” ITJP said, in a statement.

There are also concerns that the appointment of this sub-committee could be a delaying tactic to further undermine the process, especially as there is no timeline given for its activities,” the statement said.

Minister Samarasinghe has previously denounced reports of enforced disappearance as terrorist propaganda and outrightly dismissed the idea that Tamils disappeared after surrendering at the end of the civil war.

“This denial is problematic and rejects the stance taken by the Office of Missing Persons which has said its priority case is the disappearance after surrendering to the Army of hundreds of Tamils in May 2009. For a list of more than three hundred names of those individuals,” it added.

“Appointing individuals like Mahinda Samarasinghe appears to be a deliberate attempt to subvert the entire process, which is already struggling for legitimacy with many Families of the Disappeared. It is also extremely offensive for the families, many of whom handed their loved ones over to the security forces at the end of the war never to
see them again,” ITJP Executive Director Yasmin Sooka said.

The ITJP also said, “Minister Samarasinghe is also responsible for understating the population numbers in the 2009 war zone, and he refused to accept there were civilian casualties, denied government forces repeatedly targeted civilians and denied they used heavy weapons and claimed there was no issue with media freedom. As Human Rights Minister during the Rajapaksa Government, Mahinda Samarasinghe continuously defended their record and continues to deny state wrongdoing to this day.

To read the full report click here

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Latest comments

  • 8
    2

    Mahinda Samarasinghe is an ‘efficient’ liar and hence was earlier SL representative
    at UNHRC sessions, and his speeches showed his stance of ‘whitewashing’ Sri Lanka.
    His present appointment confirms this government’s stance of denying all war crimes.
    There is no remedy in sight unless a president/government true to principles of Human Rights are elected.

  • 6
    2

    This man and a good many of them are Sinhala racists. This is all a big joke. It is like the fox doing his best to equally divide the piece of cheese. UNHRC must open up their eyes wide.

  • 6
    1

    OMP was a band-aid applied on top of several other band-aids.
    Mahinda Samarasinghe’s appointment is yet another band-aid on top of OMP.
    Will we ever realise that a strong anti-biotic is urgently needed?

  • 4
    1

    Recently one article said, thsi Samarasonghe also has the name in Panama Papers.

  • 4
    2

    The British Centre in Gampaha welcomes the appointment of the Hon. Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe to overlook the OMP. The British Centre also takes this opportunity to offer a Fifty percent discount on its courses on the Grammar of Governance to the Minister. Please contact our senior representative at the OMP for further details. She will guide you through our syllabus and provide further details about our synchronized learning done through a satellite mechanism.

  • 1
    3

    What is this ITJP? ah Zooka’s new venture funded by Norwegians

  • 4
    1

    Nearly all Sri Lankan politicians are big liars but Mahinda Samarasinghe is in a class of his own. He can prove convincingly that Black is White, Big is Small and Slow is Fast. If the Listverse website (famous for its ‘Top 10’ lists) were to compile a list of the 10 biggest liars in the world you will find this man’s name there. There can be no argument that he is a Monumental Liar. He has absolutely no credibility.

  • 2
    0

    MS worked under MR for ages till late 2014. MR appointed Duminda Silva to ‘monitor’ the then Ministry of Defence. Was it of any use?
    “Cannot remember” Hm hm………….hm!

  • 4
    0

    He should fully focus on the ports- Colombo has reached full capacity when congestion builds up wants of capacity the port’s reputation would fly in the face. Singapore ports even with hundreds of berths, and now the shipping trade too in the doldrums but they are building up capacity to stay on the top. If one goes to Jorong area could see how much construction vehicles round the clock moving in and out of the port. No to time shame, we got to developed all the ports at higher pace to catch up else it’s the end of the game for us- all Colombo, Galle, Hambantota, Trincomalee,
    KKS etc should be developed at fast and forward pace.

  • 0
    0

    As long as the Government of Sri Lanka supresses the TRUTH, there will be no reconciliation and the country will be in the ” Pariah” basket in the eye of the IC. It is pity that many good Sri Lankans who yearn for peace and stability needlessly suffer more. The mass must wake up from the slumber and get a visionary and genuine leader on the pedestal.

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