4 August, 2020

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Morality Of Navi Pillay’s Visit

By Udaya Prabhath Gammanpila –

Udaya Gammanpila

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navinethem Pillay is now in Sri Lanka.  For Tamil separatists and the opposition, she is the savior.  Some ministers have rushed to make announcements expressing their confidence in the High Commissioner for her impartiality.  However, nationalists are against her visit for several reasons.  It is our duty to place the rationale for our protest before the public as well as Pillay.

Pillay is the Chief Executive of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) which passed two resolutions against Sri Lanka in this year and the last year.  According to the resolution passed this year, she should present an oral update to the UNHRC at its 24th session and a comprehensive report at its 25thsession on the implementation of the UN resolution by Sri Lanka.  Hence, this is a fact finding mission on how best Sri Lanka has implemented the resolution passed by the UNHRC.

The UNHRC resolutions against Sri Lanka have alleged that Sri Lanka had violated international humanitarian and human right laws during the last stage of the war by committing war crimes on Tamil civilians.  These resolutions primarily based on the report produced by a panel appointed by the Secretary General of UN, Ban-ki Moon.  The panel consists of three members, namely, Marzuki Darusman, Yasmin Sooka and Steven Ratner.  This panel leveled several serious allegations against Sri Lanka including killing of 40,000 Tamil civilians.  Hence, Pillay is duty bound to report to the council the veracity of the report of Moon’s panel.

Pillay is not only a lawyer but an ex-judge in South Africa.  Sri Lanka and South Africa are the only countries in the world which practice Roman Dutch Legal system.   Hence, she must be familiar with natural justice principles.  One of such principles is Nemo iudex in cause sua in Latin, meaning no person can judge a case in which she has an interest.  That is because justice must not only be done but must be seen to be done.  Pillay has grossly violated this principle.

Although Pillay is from South Africa, she is of Tamil ethnic origin.  She is a community conscious activist as reflected in her struggles against discrimination of Indian community and women in South Africa.  Since her graduate studies were sponsored by her community because of her humble background, she has an emotional attachment to her community.  In this backdrop, being a Tamil, she has no moral right to be in any fact finding mission on alleged killing of 40,000 innocent Tamils.

When she faced racial riots in South Africa in 1949, she was just eight years.  Pillay recently recalled her shocking memories about the riots to explain how she became a victim of it in her interview with Vino Reddy on 11th August 2002.  She was deprived of education, employment and social opportunities because of racial apartheid policy of then South African government.  The government officially segregated the people according to their skin colors such as white, brown, black and mixed and assigned different rights and privileges to each group.  Pillay belonged to less advantaged brown or Indian origin group.

Because of her enormous suffering as a minority in South Africa, she has become a sympathizer of minorities.  She looks at Sri Lankan conflict in South African perspective although the Government never adopted such discriminatory policies.  For her, Sri Lankan government is a reminder of apartheid South African governments.  Tales of killing of innocent Tamils remind her of 1949 racial riots and her lifelong struggle for justice for oppressed ethnic groups.  Hence, she is prejudiced with her own experience in racial discrimination.

Pillay’s husband, Gaby Pillay was arrested in 1971 under Terrorism Act of 1967.  She wept, mourned and finally fought a successful legal battle to secure the release of her husband.  Thereafter she became the most sought after lawyer for terrorist detainees.  She has later explained sorrowful tales of these terrorist suspects under apartheid regime.  Because of this experience, she must be seeing her husband in every terrorist.  Her husband may have fought for a just cause under apartheid regime.  However, generalization of circumstances may cause irreparable damage to anti-terrorist activities.

Yasmin Sooka, the second member of Moon’s Panel, is an NGO activist in South Africa.  She is the Executive Director of Sooka Center for Human Rights.   As the two leading women right activists in South Africa, Pillay and Sooka maintain a very close relationship.  Pillay used to function as an advisor to Sooka’s NGO.  Further, Pillay has frequently written to the international magazine titled “Transnational Justice” of which Sooka serves in editorial board.  There was a strong rumour that Sooka was appointed to Moon’s panel on the recommendation of Pillay.  In this backdrop, Pillay has visited Sri Lanka to verify the contents of the report submitted by one of her best friends.

Pillay has already displayed her prejudiced mind towards Tamil separatism.  She was very critical about the conduct of Sri Lankan forces during and after the war.  When the Western superpowers forced Sri Lanka to declare a ceasefire in early 2009, she supported the move.  Pillay issued a media release on 13.03.2009 stating that the current level of civilian casualties was truly shocking.  She warned that the loss of life may reach catastrophic level unless hostilities were suspended.  She mentioned in this statement that both sides of the war may have committed war crimes.  She confidently said that the government had repeatedly shelled the designated no fire zones for civilians.

She went on to mention that more than 2,800 civilians may have been killed and more than 7,000 injured since 20.01.2009.  Although she stated that her figures were from a credible source, she was careful enough not to disclose her “credible source”.  In this backdrop, she may use the present tour in Sri Lanka to justify her statement made in 2009 which was full of unfounded facts.

Because of the above reasons, Pillay should have abstained from involving in Sri Lanka by tasking this assignment to one of her subordinates.  In fact, if she is genuinely interested in human rights, she should have visited countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Egypt, Lybia and Tunisia before visiting Sri Lanka.  Although western allied forces have killed more than one million civilians alone in Afghanistan and Iraq, Pillay has conveniently ignored these grave crimes.

The so called liberators in Lybia killed Muammar Gadafi, the President of Lybia, in a brutal manner in presence of hundreds of people.  His female bodyguards were raped and tortured before killing publicly.  Although there are hundreds of eye witnesses and video footages as evidence, Pillay does not want to take any action since these gangsters were blessed and supported by the USA.

Recently, military and judiciary of Egypt acted in concert to topple the democratically elected government to establish military rule with the blessing of the West.  It was a gross violation of human rights of all citizens of Egypt.  However, the so called guardian of human rights, Navi Pillay, is yet to talk about it.

In the light of above, Navi Pillay is racially prejudiced, influenced by her friend Sooka and also controlled by Western superpowers.  Hence, she has lost her credentials to be in a fact finding mission in Sri Lanka as mandated by the resolution adopted at the UNHRC.

*Udaya Prabhath Gammanpila is the Western Provincial Minister of Environment and a leader of Jathika Hela Urumaya This article appeared in his official website

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Latest comments

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    Minister Gammanpila:

    Expect lot of abuse from human right activists of the western style and so many other kinds good people licking the as2es of the foreign cultures and economies.

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      JimSofty:
      Why are you licking Udaya Gammanpila’s as2 h0le?

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      GinNutty:
      We know whose a… you and Gammanpila lick, so why don’t you keep your toilet comments where they belong, in your toilet or even better cuddle up to them. Or do you even have a toilet where you live?

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        Udaya Gammanpila’s racist [Edited out] stinks like JimSofty’s. So JimSofty likes licking it.

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        reply to palyan yako .

        Your name suggests the truly uncultured nature . Do not attack Gamnpila personally . Let everyone know what he has said wrong here in the article . Your comments are due to the anger you feel as his article cannot be faulted .

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      Mr Gammanpila,
      How many Tamils and Muslims are in the electorate that you represent ?
      How do you represent Tamils, Moors, Muslims and others as MP or politician?
      Isn’t there conflict of interest because of your Jathake ?
      You have to resign if you understand what you said in your article.
      Anura

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        This Mapila sucks and live on the blood of the innocent Sinhalese pretending to be a Pseudo Nationalist. Half educated as that bugger JimSofty.

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          Jimsofty is a mental case. From what he has added to this and other threads, most of us feel like that, so no worries about him, just ignore the guy. May be, Leela should have become Jimsofty with the time.

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      Human Rights – What about Asia’s Buddhist style?

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      Now what the hell is this joker Gamman Pillay saying aboout Navi Pillay???

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    Mr.Udaya Gammanpila: Your presentation made with a view to “colour” the whole mandated visit of the UNHR Commissioner, in my opinion is ad hominem. Anyway you are entitled to your opinion.

    But, Sri Lanka has now to get ready to “meet” the Commissioner in a different forum and that is when she makes her own report on the findings and other relevant observations. You could possibly and already would have had a glimpse of what is in stock, if you have read her speech at the time of her “Press Briefing”. You as a responsible politicians should know by now, it is pointless to deal to such extent as regards the “spousal backgrounds” and “personal experiences” of persons who are mandated to do some tasks. May be, perhaps, in a case argued in a Court of Law would be relevant and fruitful. But this is different.

    You know what this Government said about “Darusman Report”( you too say the same) and also we know how a delegation headed by the Minister of External Affairs “secretly” met the Secretary, UNO to discuss the contents. Were it not for the media we would never have known that “secret meeting”. So we know what went on and please do not try to “FOOL” us.

    My request to you: Please do some soul searching and collect the facts and get ready to meet this specially mandated Commissioner at the next session of the UNHR in Geneva.

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    Racism dripping from Udaya Gamanpilla’s article as usual! How come just the fact that Navi Pillay being a Tamil affect her official capacity to produce a report on Sri Lanka where Tamils are also an affected party? The principle of natural justice never takes somebody’s right to sit in judgement of a party of one’s own ethnic background. In fact Navi Pillay is not judging anything here in a court of law. She is just gathering facts and producing a report to be taken into consideration by an International body.

    According to this stupid argument, a Sinhalese judge cannot sit in judgement of a case of an ethnic dispute where a Sinhalese is involved? Then, why did LLRC consist of Sinhalese and Tamils? According to Gamanpila’s nonsense, they violated the principle of “Nemo iudex in cause sua” by gathering facts presented by ethnic Sinhalese and Tamils on matters related to the 30 year conflict with sensitive issues to do with ethnicity itself?

    In fact all principles of natural justice were humiliated in the unconstitutional process to impeach the cheif justice Shirani Bandaranayake. Did we hear Udaya Gamanpila raising any concerns about the Government’s violation of the “Nemo iudex in cause sua” principle? Did we hear Udaya Gamanpila raising any concerns about the way the military court functioned to send General Sarath Fonseka behind bars?

    What transpires in Gamnpila’s racist nonsense is the working principle of his party – JHU – and those of the Government. keep in mind that Sri Lankans are fed up with your filthy racist crap. But I thank you for vomiting it out for us to smell its real smell.

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      Thrisantha:

      Can you name any country, any organization where this “Natural Justice” is practiced ?

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        Everywhere other than the pariah state called Sri Lanka.

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      Thrishantha:
      I have some doubts about your sanity when you try to bring reason into any discussion with this [Edited out] racist Gammanpila.
      His knowledge of any language does not include the words for civilized conduct or decency, so you might as well talk to the closest blank wall instead of wasting time on him.

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      Thrisantha:

      You are a stupid Idiot, if you are honest to your heart, who lives in a hypothetical world.

      BE practical.

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        JimSofty,

        Thrishantha is not an idiot.You are the idiot here always.

        BE PRACTICAL IN YOUR LIFE.

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        Why this raging anger Softy? Be soft man! Practice some more Metta. You are Guardian of Buddhism right?

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        Jim softly I agree with what you say . TN is a big headed person who thinks he is a know all .

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      Exactly Thrishantha , i stopped reading the article when i saw Gammanpila’s stupid argument of ” pillay being a Tamil” idiocy , what sort of a bunkum is this ? just imagine Pillay’s job was holding by an American ,British, Canadian, Australian ,Indian, an Arab or any one humanly possible how many silly counter arguments this racist scum would come up with ? i have one question to ask from this scum bag , who threw the hand grenade at Shah ruk kahn’s concert in Colombo ?

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        We understand reasons Wimal weerawanshe with his background to have named Pillay as a Ltte supporter, but Gammanpilla if said to be as an educated Lawyer to join wimal´s statment is unacceptable. He should have learnt knowledge to accuse anyone without studying her or his profile well.

        These dimwits would call every tamil leaders in international stage as LTTE supporters. President should have costed all nerves while going to ask for appology for what his donkeys have done.

        I have no doubt, that Ms Pillay was furious also about the low level remarks of their colleague -Mervin but she did not include it in her last speech.

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          I have my friends living in Cmbo area today, keeping 2-3 or more dogs for their protection. This unfortunatley, has become a kind of protective mechanism for them living in a crime friendly society as ours today. If anybody would visit them, these dogs bark loudly as they can – so that barking could last hours long. This as I experienced myself on my visit made to them was very annoying. So my advice to these friends was to have these dogs trained well through a well trained dogs trainer. They confirmed, that they dont have good trainers in SL yet.

          The very same tasks in the lanken regime are being assigned to Wimal, Gamanpilla and Mervin by MR himself. No checks and balances, sometimes, these doggy charactor is not at appropriate – above all before the visiting international high ranking officers. Wimal ´s mini brain has no capacity to get it, nor has MR. This what we got to see yesterday in SL. As it is the need of better training for dogs is imperative, MR should have to get his FRONT men (dogs) well trained, to stay fooling the nation and IC further, else, good days of his rule is already gone. Days are numbered.

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      Thrishantha, Well said, you have said it briefly and to the point. Agree with you fully.

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      Here we go again . TN and his usual blatant bitter comments . TN has a chip on his shoulder. Maybe he tries to be someone who is a know all with his smart unwarranted comments.

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        I know it is difficult to be digested for JHU supporters and the Govt. And, it is easy to get away by blaming “that man has a chip..or an axe ….”. But racism in the above article of Udaya is very clear. Can you take my comment line by line and find something wrong in it with a more decent argument?

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          I can understand Why christians are so upset.

          Alan is a muslim.

          Two major Abrahamic religions should be allowed to expand at their will.

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    Mr Gammanpila, what sort of panel you look for…you can list out the criteria and background in order to conduct the investigations….she has been conducting the investigations against the LLRC recommendations provided by the government…if the government has been standing by what it said it will do, why they (you) worry about discrediting her personality….

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      “LLRC recommendations provided by the government”

      HEre you don’t talk about how stupid politicians were set up IC.

      LLRC is another 13th amendment.

      13th amendment is imposed by India.

      LLRC was also imposed by India and other interested foreign parties. LLRC was headed mostly by the pro-LTTE Tamils.

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        “LLRC was headed mostly by the pro-LTTE Tamils.” – How many tamils were on the LLRC Panel? I believe there was only one Tamil.

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          Anpu:
          JimPissa’s comments fit the pen-name he uses. He not only lies he fabricates and CT needs to take a look at the abusive language (four-letter words included) that he keeps putting on its pages. “Freedom of expression” DOES NOT include this kind of vile language and has no place on this or any other website.

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    Navi Pillay is a Tamil so she will always support Tamils only. Not Muslims.

    Look what is happening to Muslim women in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Palestine, Bosnia, Egypt, Libya, Nigeria, Tunisia, Syria, etc., etc., etc., etc.

    They are getting abused every day. There are over 5,000,000 Muslim widows in these countries forced into prostitution.

    What is Navi Pillay doing about it? NOTHING.

    When you have a cricket match between SL and Pakistan, you don’t get umpires from SL or Pakistan. You get from a DIFFERENT country.

    Why that simple logic is not followed here?

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      Leela,
      For people like you these issues are like Cricket matches.
      If you have brains you should understand the calibre of a person like Pillay
      Anyway, according to your argument, how do feel like having Sinhalese ruler (Moda Raja currently) in Siri Lanka where multiple ethnic groups living for long time.
      So country like SL or India, we always need Sudda boy as President ? MR is bias to Sinhalese because he believes he is Sinhalese? No MR is bias because he is fool.

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      Fathima Fukushima:
      Don’t let Jim Nutty lick your a$_ too. You would rather have a monk lick it-lol.

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      Guys don’t comment to this Prosti woman……..

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        Alan
        You are correct. Fathima Fuckshima appears to be a [Edited out]. Jim Nutty is [Edited out]!

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      Fuku-fuku softly,
      Why then MaRa didnt appoint the whole PSC member from opposition on CJ case? How come was it fair six from kekille regime and 4 from opps?

      For you this may be like Cricket or Elle but this is much more severe than that any normal human being but for Ganasasara and serial Killer’s supporters.

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      Thank you Fathima, I agree 100%. Of course, there is a conflict of interest here that any one with half a brain can see. Unfortunately , the people who subscribe to CT are not that intelligent to grasp that concept.

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      Fathima F:
      You don’t have to convince anyone of your stupidity by repeating the rubbish you do. Just once had us all believing in how big a moron you are.

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    Minister Gammanpilla has failed to provide constructive criticism…how else would you want this handled minister? If our government mishandles and abuses security forces for self-gain, if law and order have effectively collapsed in our country..is it not good if someone from outside with power to do something interfere to fix our government? ..especially when ministers like you too have only focused on self-gain!

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    Minister Udaya Prabhath Gammanpila
    Some Simple Questions for you.

    Q1. Are you a Buddhist following the Enlightened Buddha Dhamma?

    Q2. Are you Sinhala? Did you get your DNA tested?

    Q3. Are you a Sinhala Buddist?

    Q4. Are you a Sri Lankan?

    Q5. Who is a Sri Lankan?

    Q6. Who were the Native of Lanka? Vedda, others?

    Q7. Was Rawana a Hindu? A Jain?

    Q8. Why is Bali Indonesia with 94% Hindus peaceful, whereas Lanka with 70% Sinhala Buddhist Violent and UN Human Righys Commissions are after?

    Q9. Why is that India got rid of Buddhism? Hinduism is better? Bali?

    Q10. Why did the Buddhist Monks appoint themselves as the Third Gem of the Triple Gem? Monk Hegemony?

    Can you answer the 10 questions q as a Buddhist who follows the Buddha Dhamma, not as a politician?

    Nirvana and Nibbana Awaits you.

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      Minister Udaya Prabhath Gammanpila –

      Here are some references to Jainism and in Sri Lanka.

      http://www.slideshare.net/balpatil/evolution-of-sramanic-jain-culture

      Please read pages 17 to 20.

      Why are you a Buddhist and not a Jain?

      Was it the Buddhist Monk Hegemony?

      Has any Sinhala Buddhist attained Bibbana , Nirvana, Samsara or Rebirth over the past 2,300 years after Buddhism came to Lanka?

      Are you a politician?

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      Some more comments..
      *) Dalai Lama is given a home and respect in India by Hindus from 1959? Why Dalai Lama never ever invited or visited to Siri Lanka which is said to be following compassionate Buddha teaching ?
      Anura

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        Anura,

        “Why Dalai Lama never ever invited or visited to Siri Lanka which is said to be following compassionate Buddha teaching ?”

        1. Buddhism Stated in India.

        2. Sri Lanka follows the violent Theravada Buddhism and Sinhala Buddhist Racism, and he wanted nothing to do with that.

        3. There were riots in 1958 when many Tamils were killed and the Buddhist Monks participated, which I saw with my own eyes.

        4. In 1959, a Buddhist Monk killed the Prime Minister.

        So, even if invited to Sri Lanka, he would have respectfully declined.

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    “Although Pillay is from South Africa, she is of Tamil ethnic origin. She is a community conscious activist as reflected in her struggles against discrimination of Indian community and women in South Africa. Since her graduate studies were sponsored by her community because of her humble background, she has an emotional attachment to her community. In this backdrop, being a Tamil, she has no moral right to be in any fact finding mission on alleged killing of 40,000 innocent Tamils.”

    Replace Gammanpilla for Pillai, Sri Lanka for South Africa, Sinhalese Buddhist for Tamil, Sinhalese Buddhist for Indian and what do we have? – Gammanpilla has no moral right to talk about Navi Pillai and the killing of 40,000 Tamils.

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      It would be interesting to know the origin of Gammanpilla. (GammanPILLAI)

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        You mean Gamman Pillay???

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        Anpu,

        “It would be interesting to know the origin of Gammanpilla. (GammanPILLAI)”

        Southern Indian Gene Pool, that is where the Minister came from like many others.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genographic_Project

        The Genographic Project, launched on 13 April 2005 by the National Geographic Society and IBM, is a multi-year genetic anthropology study that aims to map historical human migration patterns by collecting and analyzing DNA samples from hundreds of thousands of people from around the world.[1]

        Sinhalese people

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sinhalese_people

        Studies looking at the origin of the Sinhalese have been contradictory. Older studies suggest a predominantly Sri Lankan Tamil contribution followed by a significant Bengali contribution with no North Western Indian contribution,[47][48] while more modern studies point towards a predominantly Bengali contribution and a minor Tamil and North Western Indian (Gujarati & Punjabi) contribution.[49][50][51] Multiple studies have found no significant genetic difference between the Sinhalese and the three other major ethnic groups in Sri Lanka (Sri Lankan Tamil, Indian Tamil and Sri Lankan Moor).[48][52][53][54][55][56]

        It is debatable whether the Sri Lankan population have genetic links to Far East Asian populations however due to their close links to North East India, there is a likelihood of some traces of East Asian genes.[57][

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          Thanks Amarasiri.

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        How many GammanPillay families are in Siri Lanka? Max 25 to 50 families? What does this say? GammanPillays are bad at reproducing or arrived SL in the last century…..
        This same principle applies to family names like Gopallawa or Rathwatte?
        Anura

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    In that case no one can go on a fact finding mission in the world. An alien should come to earth in that case to judge any community in the world. That is what this MP is suggesting. Such a narrow minded, petty minded people are an insult to everyone. these idiots utter all nonsense and Mahinda Rajapaksa has to appologise too. These damages everyone’s existence. Where ever we go, we are laughed about many so called politicians’ conduct. Jackazzz you are!

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    Gammanpila, do you think the UN report will be anything like the PSC that investigated CJ Ms.Bandaranayake?? If you remember you backed that report, so what you coming to talk about roman-dutch law to others?
    Have you raised your voice against recent human rights violations such as attacks on religious places of worship, white van abductions, disappearances, murders in Weliweriya, Chilaw, FTZ, murders and rapes in Noori and impunity for govt thugs who attack opposition rallies, etc, etc?
    Gamanpila do not sell the rights of the people for your political gain, pull your head out of your arse and look around these accusations are coming from Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims and Burghers living in Sri Lanka and not Navi Pillai whom you are trying to call bias.You are an opportunist and a Sinhala buddhist extremist fanning hatred, who will not rest until Sri Lanka is engulfed for another 30 years of civil war.

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      The UN report produced by Darusman is worst than any PSC reports (in applying globally accepted standards).

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    Dear Udaya Prabath Gammanpilla,

    Exactly what you said is applicable to you and your government. Your government and you are representing Sinhala and therefore you are always biased towards Tamils and you have no right to govern Tamils.

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    Sir

    https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/pillay-advises-state-media-rajpal-read-more-to-dispel-myth-about-un-bias/

    Asked by the editor of the Daily News if the UN was investigating US drone strikes against civilians in Pakistan and Afghanistan Navi Pillay replied in the affirmative.

    “Look at international issues, environment, drone attack and internet censorship. You would be doing a huge benefit for Sri Lankan readers if you raise these issues” the visiting UN HR Chief said.

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    Dear Mr. Udaya Prabhath Gammanpila

    Your article is excellent but too late, why we failed to reveal these facts before her visit…regardless of their double standard towards Sri Lanka when comparing with Palestine/Egypt/Afghanistan/Myanmar….etc.

    Same time, I hope you will understand that we are living in a global village, if there were no any human right violations were committed during the war on LTTE terrorist, it’s our duty to proof that, in front of the world…same time if any atrocity has happened we have to take the action by our self as a sovereign nation which respects the life of each and every human being of this grate nation…But I don’t think its praiseworthy to insinuate UNHCR high commissioner while she is on her visit to our country; definitely which will not upgrade the image of our nation which is already declining because of your corrupt regime ……..

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      Navi Pillai is a very smart lady (not a fool in any standard). She knows what her agenda is and she is going about systematically in realising that agenda.

      Many of us stated at the very begining that the skeleton of her report may have already been written. It just requires few additions to look more authentic. Her trip will allow her to find the required adjectives.

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        Dear Mr. Hela

        Yes I totally agreed with you, but we should not be fooled because of our collective stupidity as what the current regime is doing mainly because, lack of professionalism in handling international issues….

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    “Sri Lanka and South Africa are the ONLY countries in the world which practice Roman Dutch Legal system” says this legal lunumiris of the JHU – said to be one on whom the Rajapakses rely on matters legal. He might educate himself that Lesotho, Swaziland, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Guyana, Indonesia, East Timor base their legal system on the Roman-Dutch Law.

    This is not the first time this “lawyer” makes a fool of himself in public. As Dr. N.M. Perera castigated another mediocre lawyer in Parliament in his time “I feel sorry for your clients”

    Senguttuvan

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      Sengu, thanks very much for the accurate info. you were right though , this so called Ausi educated lawyer ‘s English comprehension and the knowledge of the law are beyond us ,question is why would anyone by any stretch of the imagination takes this sub standard lawyer seriously?

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    Mr Minister, Who has written this article? How much you have paid for his /her job?

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      I share serious doubts as to whether Minister Gammanpila wrote this article as there are too many mistakes; spelling, grammar and factual. But ofcourse this article has his implicit blessing and no express denial. Gammanpila is unworthy of the high position he holds and he does so only because he is an irritant to Rajapaksa, and like all other irritants must be kept close even running the risk of having him put his foot in matters that are of no concern of his. The Commissioner’s visit has the blessings of MR and these pesky irritants (Gammanpila, Mervyn, Wimal et al) have no business usurping the Presidential invitation. Do they realise the damage they do to the standing of Sri Lankans in internationl circles? Do they know the guffawing that goes on behind closed doors?

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        Spring Koha,

        I went to a meeting of a Sarvodaya-related body a few years ago
        to listen to Gammanpila. He spoke in English. Clearly the man has a long way to go in the language. I wondered how he managed to pass out of an Aussie University. His forte is clearly
        a strong anti-Tamil and anti-Indian bias. He hides behind Sinhala
        chauvinism and is nothing more than a communal rabble-rouser.

        Backlash

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    THIS IS FOR ALL THOSE TALKED AGAINST MR. GAMMAMPILA. UNHCR IS THE USA – PET PROJECT.

    “Despite a high-profile effort to reform the world’s top human rights panel, the new UN Human Rights Council continues to face the same criticisms that plagued its predecessor, the Commission on Human Rights. Experts say bloc voting, loose membership standards, and bias against Israel are keeping the two-year-old council from living up to expectations as a responsible watchdog over global human rights norms. It is earning a failing grade from a broad range of groups, including human rights advocates, international law experts, and democracy activists. Experts say the council’s condemnation of the human rights situations in Darfur, Myanmar, and the Democratic Republic of Congo are steps in the right direction, and there is also a broad expectation that a new U.S. administration in Washington could change the contentious relationship between the council and the United States, which is not a member. But in a year during which the world body marked the sixtieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, many see the new rights council as a stain on the UN’s reputation.

    The Creation of the Human Rights Council

    The Human Rights Council emerged from a reform process initiated by then-Secretary-General Kofi Annan in March 2006 to monitor violations of human rights and encourage their protection. The council is the successor of the Commission on Human Rights, which had become widely discredited for allowing states with questionable human rights records to gain membership and avoid scrutiny. By an almost unanimous vote–the United States, Israel, Palau, and the Marshall Islands were the sole dissenters–the General Assembly overhauled the commission to create the council. The new council was designed to serve as an arena for members to address ongoing abuses and for nongovernmental organizations to voice concerns or to lobby states to take action. While the body has no enforcement power, it makes recommendations to the UN General Assembly and can spotlight human rights abusers.

    Several structural changes were made, including:

    Membership. While the commission had fifty-three members, the council has only forty-seven. The UN’s five regional groups are each allotted a set number of seats, which differs slightly from the allotment of seats in the commission. During the negotiations to create the council, the United States argued to decrease the membership size based on the theory that smaller UN bodies are more effective, says Jeffrey Laurenti, a senior fellow at the Century Foundation. Negotiations ended with a reduction in the number of Western seats, a decrease from ten to seven. Members are elected by an absolute majority vote in the General Assembly and are limited to two consecutive terms, each lasting three years. Members in the commission were chosen by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) to serve an unlimited number of three-year terms. Many experts say that membership standards still aren’t strict, though members must now explicitly pledge to uphold human rights standards, as well as undergo periodic reviews of their performance in upholding such freedoms. Nevertheless, the council’s defeat of Belarus’s bid for membership in 2007 signifies the tougher membership criteria is more than window dressing, says Lawrence H. Moss, special counsel for Human Rights Watch. In addition, a two-thirds majority vote by the UN General Assembly can suspend a council member for committing “gross and systematic” human rights violations.

    Special Procedures. Special procedures refer to mandates of special rapporteurs or working groups to monitor country-specific or thematic rights violations, such as the human rights situation in Myanmar or extrajudicial executions the world over. As a part of the transition from the old commission to the new council structure, all thematic mandates have been renewed and a few have been added, like the mandate on access to safe drinking water. Country-specific mandates are one of the most effective tools of the council, says Paula Schriefer, director of advocacy at Freedom House, a U.S.-based nonprofit research institute. However, the numbers of country-specific mandates are declining as countries increasingly call for their abolition. Allegations of bias and heavy politicization are frequent critiques, with many states saying they unfairly target developing countries.
    Special Rapporteurs. Individuals that monitor and report on specific mandates through visits and discussions with local organizations are known as special rapporteurs. Cuba and Belarus’s mandates were discontinued in 2007 amidst critiques by states that each country’s special rapporteur’s report was overblown and at times incorrect. The representative for the Russian Federation said the report on Belarus was written “at the behest of political demands,” while the representative from Cuba called its report, “a true program for regime change.” Although outvoted, representatives from the Western bloc stated ongoing human rights violations and the states’ noncooperation as reasons to extend the mandates. As a result of the battle over Cuba and Belarus’s mandates, a Code of Conduct (PDF) for special rapporteurs was created that emphasized the “centrality of the notions of impartiality and objectivity.” While seemingly benign, the Code of Conduct further restricts the rapporteur, a position that has been historically underfunded and unpopular, says Freedom House’s Schriefer.
    Universal Periodic Review. One of the most significant breaks from the structure of the old commission is the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), experts say. All UN member states must undergo a threefold assessment of their compliance with human rights obligations. The assessment consists of a self-evaluation by the country under review, a report by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) on any applicable treaties and domestic laws, and a compilation of observations from nongovernmental organizations and concerned states. Countries with poor human rights records can easily ignore the recommendations that come out of UPR, says Schriefer, and a bigger role for experts would strengthen the process. The effectiveness of the UPR remains to be seen and reviews of big players like China and Russia will be good tests, experts say.

    Criticisms of the Human Rights Council
    Reforms notwithstanding, experts on human rights continue to lament the tendency of council members to vote in blocs rather than address each issue individually. During the 2007-2008 cycle, for instance, the African group was particularly prone to voting as a bloc (PDF), says a report by the Democracy Coalition Project. Other blocs include the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) and the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), which experts say tend to regard economic and security ties as more important than chastising a country for its human rights abuses. As a result, “Democracies do not always practice what they preach,” says Moss of Human Rights Watch.

    “Washington’s hands-off approach to the Human Rights Council undermined it from the start.” — Juliette de Rivero, Advocacy Director, Human Rights Watch

    One of the chief U.S. critiques of the council is its disproportionate focus on Israel. “[The council is] continuing a pattern that does nothing to advance the goal of a peaceful, negotiated, two-state solution to this conflict,” said the U.S. ambassador to the UN’s Geneva office, Warren W. Tichenor, in April 2008. Most of the single-country resolutions passed and four out of six special sessions called since 2006 have been to reprimand Israel for its treatment of Palestinians. The UN’s special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories, Richard Falk, says Israel merits close scrutiny of its rights record, but he adds in a June 2008 interview with The Nation: “Limitations of resources, geopolitical pressures and blind spots help explain why some other situations involving serious human rights abuse are not addressed with comparable seriousness.”

    During the seventh session in 2008, debate over the renewal of the mandate of the special rapporteur on freedom of expression sparked further controversy. Citing inflammatory caricatures and documentaries about Islam, the Organization of the Islamic Conference proposed an amendment in which religious discrimination would not be protected by freedom of expression. Despite fears from the Western bloc that this limits free speech, the mandate passed with the amendment. The debate highlights the difficulties a universal body faces with setting universal values.

    The United States and the Council

    While negotiations over its reforms were ongoing, former U.S. Ambassador to the UN John R. Bolton said the council was at best, “marginally better than the old body.” To show disapproval of the council, the United States made a symbolic reduction in its 2008 payment of dues to the UN to reflect the imagined share that goes to funding the council. In June 2008, in another display of opposition, the United States withdrew the observer status it had maintained in the council. The criticism that has the most traction in Washington is the council’s consistently critical voice toward Israeli actions, says Laurenti from the Century Foundation. The Organization of the Islamic Conference is often the sponsor of resolutions condemning Israel; other countries in the developing world tend to go along, resulting in a substantial majority on the issue. The United States also disapproves of the membership standards of the council. Freedom House has determined that three of the Council’s members–China, Cuba, and Saudi Arabia–are among the world’s most repressive countries. Another five–Russia, Pakistan, Egypt, Bahrain, and Azerbaijan–are considered “Not Free.”

    Country-specific mandates are one of the most effective tools of the council. However, the numbers of country-specific mandates are declining as countries increasingly call for their abolition. –Paula Schriefer, Freedom House

    The criticism goes both ways, however. “Washington’s hands-off approach to the Human Rights Council undermined it from the start,” says Juliette de Rivero, Geneva advocacy director at Human Rights Watch. Moreover, the United States has received flack for its handling of terrorist suspects in Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay from Human Rights Watch and other rights advocacy groups. Under George W. Bush’s presidency, the United States has refused to run for council membership.

    While some experts say the United States would lend legitimacy to the council by becoming a member, others say it would have little effect. The Obama administration revived U.S. observer status at a meeting of the council in March 2009 and the UN General Assembly voted overwhelmingly in favor of full U.S. membership to the council (CSMonitor) for a three-year term in May. President Barack Obama has said the United States needs to rededicate itself to the council in the hopes of tackling problems like genocide in Darfur and human rights abuses in Zimbabwe. “Obama changes the landscape dramatically, especially if he takes swift action on Guantanamo and accountability for torture,” says Laurenti.

    The Decision to Replace the Human Rights Commission

    The Human Rights Commission came into force sixty years ago to implement the provisions of the UN’s groundbreaking Universal Declaration on Human Rights. After decades of complaints from Western nations during the Cold War, and from other states targeted by the Human Rights Commission for their behavior, the commission was scrapped by an overwhelming vote of the General Assembly. In a report from September 2005, former Secretary-General Annan said the 53-member commission had been undermined by “declining credibility and professionalism” due to a practice in which autocratic states banded together to block scrutiny of their records. China regularly defeated efforts to discuss its record. Critics noted that Libya–widely criticized for its poor human rights record–chaired the commission at one point and that, in the spring of 2004, the commission declined to take tough action against Sudan despite reports of rampant abuses in Darfur. Sudan was elected to the commission soon after that session. The United States, in particular, pushed for the overhaul of the commission.

    A high-level UN human rights body first met in 1946 to establish legal norms on protecting fundamental rights and freedoms worldwide. It developed into a forum where states and NGOs could voice their concerns on the behavior of states toward rights issues. Many rights experts say the United Nations was important in establishing universal standards. Since the Universal Declaration of Human Rights passed in 1948, the UN has passed other major treaties such as the Convention against Torture and the Convention on the Rights of the Child. While the council’s efforts to protect human rights can be undermined by political alliances, it has been applauded for condemning the human rights situations in Darfur, Myanmar, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. For the council to reach its potential in addressing the world’s most pressing human rights violations, democratic members need to invest more political will, says Schriefer. “

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    US DRONE STRIKES ARE 10 YEARS OLD. WHAT DID NAVI PILLAI DO ABOUT IT ?

    NOTHING. INSTEAD SHE IS CARRYING OUT THE US AGENDA.

    ‘ Over the last ten years, drones have become a critical tool in the war against terrorist and militant organizations worldwide. Their advantages over other weapons and intelligence systems are well known. They can silently observe an individual, group, or location for hours on end, but take immediate action should a strike opportunity become available–all without putting a pilot at risk. This combination of capabilities is unique and has allowed the United States to decimate the leadership of al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and disrupt the activities of many other militant groups.

    Yet, as Micah Zenko writes in this Council Special Report, drones are not without their drawbacks, especially with regard to targeted killings. Like any tool, drones are only as useful as the information guiding them, and for this they are heavily reliant on local military and intelligence cooperation. More important, significant questions exist about who constitutes a legitimate target and under what circumstances it is acceptable to strike. There is also the question of net utility: To what extent are the specific benefits derived from drone strikes offset by the reality that the strikes often alienate the local government and population? And there is the reality that drones are proliferating but, as is often the case with new technologies, the international legal and regulatory framework is lagging behind.

    Zenko puts forward a substantive agenda. He argues that the United States should end so-called signature strikes, which target unidentified militants based on their behavior patterns and personal networks, and limit targeted killings to a limited number of specific terrorists with transnational ambitions. He also calls Congress to improve its oversight of drone strikes and to continue restrictions on armed drone sales. Finally, he recommends that the United States work internationally to establish rules and norms governing the use of drones.

    Reforming U.S. Drone Strike Policies raises an important and underexamined set of issues. It analyzes the potentially serious consequences, both at home and abroad, of a lightly overseen drone program and makes recommendations for improving its governance. The result is a provocative report that is well worth reading and contemplating.

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    THIS IS HOW US USES UNHCR AGAINST COUNTRIES THAT IT WANTS TO PUNISH.

    ‘ The Russian Foreign Ministry has described a resolution on Syria passed by the United Nations Human Rights Council as “biased” and said that it is an attempt to legitimize one particular Syrian opposition group.
    “The resolution is biased and counterproductive,” the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement published on its website Saturday, adding that it placed too much emphasis on the role of Hezbollah militants fighting for Syrian President Bashar Assad. “It is directed against the Syrian government and ignores the crimes committed by the radical opposition… the authors [of the resolution] are not worried that thousands of trained, armed and well-paid terrorists hired from abroad are fighting in the country.”
    The resolution was passed by the United Nations Human Rights Council, or UNHRC, on Friday with the support of 37 countries. Venezuela opposed the motion, and nine countries abstained. Russia’s delegation could not vote because it only has observer status.
    The Russian foreign ministry also alleged that the resolution was part of an effort to give greater credibility to the Syrian National Council, a leading opposition group coordinating the insurrection against Assad.
    “The resolution contains an attempt to legitimate the Syrian opposition National Coalition,” the foreign ministry statement said. “And alongside this it ignores many moderate opposition groups.”
    The text of the UNHRC motion was proposed by Qatar on behalf of the United Kingdom, the United States, Saud Arabia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates, Reuters reported. All these countries are seen as strong supporters of the Syrian opposition.
    The resolution came just one day after the United States said that it would begin supplying arms to Syrian rebels.
    Russia is seen as a strong backer of the Syrian regime, and has vetoed several Western-sponsored UN Security Council initiatives designed to pressure Assad into ending the use of force in a civil war that the UN says has claimed over 90,000 lives. ‘

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      Softy,
      You are a deranged moron. Just get lost. No human rights organization can be perfect. Also, The US is the MAJOR FUNDER of the ENTIRE UNITED NATIONS. If anyone thinks that it is going to bite the hand that feeds you got to be a class A IDIOT.

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    A series of racist assumptions epitomising the attitude of the majority Sinhalese chauvinists towards the Tamils showing that they cannot get out of this mindset. Bensen

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      Because of Tamils only Buddhist and Muslims are having problems in Sri Lanka. We are better off without them.

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    VOTE – That matters

    Udaya Gammenpila is no exception to that…. How else you can fool your own people to live a life that you dream of…

    WW, CR, BBS, SR, many more to come to fool the people and spil the venum… Uday does the same… don’t worry … time will answer…

    PATRIOTS….. Bullshit

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    Mr.Gamanpila,

    First of all your smile in the face says million things about you. You are a coward hiding eggs inside your stomach and showing a complete different picture to the world. Your type of politicions are born crooks and you deserve a PHD in drama acting like your boss.

    Please read all the above comments what they tell about you.

    I only say is that You and your Rajapakse Government is a Pain in the ass and a headache to all of us and to the International community. UNHRC Navi Pillai don’t need to come all the way to Sri Lanka and poke her fingers if your Rajapakse Government rule the country democratically and do what they promissed to people.

    If I write everything about you and your cunning foxes in the Rajapakse Dictatorial Government who ruin our country, It will take a book to write.

    But still if you really want to know what they are, please send me a comment here and I will write in breef about them. We saw your behaviour and lies during CJ Dr.Shirani Bandaranayake impeachment trial.

    http://www.icj.org/sri-lanka-judges-around-the-world-condemn-impeachment-of-chief-justice-dr-shirani-bandaranayake

    http://asiasociety.org/blog/asia/bleak-state-rule-law-sri-lanka

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WjtDT5PKuY

    Also You are nothing but a Sinhala Buddhist Racist.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WjtDT5PKuY

    We have a Parliament whose ministers and MPs been selected by the Citizens to resolve our Issues and problems….and not a Racist, fanatical Sinhala Buddhist Cult to do it. All issues should be resolved through Parliament.

    You and your double acting, double character jokers who could be bought for Pennies and who are cunning foxes who tell nothing but lies to us to get Rajapakse Bones, crook Alibabas, sex perverts like Mervin are a liability to our country and to the world.

    Forget about what’s happening around the world, but fulfill your promises that you gave to Citizens and to UN.

    Please don’t give anymore headaches, troubles and humiliate us Sri Lanbkans at the UNHRC.

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      Mr.Gamanpila,

      Please tell your “Maha Eka” Big boss the uneducated Moron to Lower his Swolen Head a little bit and be humble, and Listen to the People and to the International community.

      He has already gone off the track and unless he correct his path soon, he will bring total distruction to our country.

      Don’t play party politics with the people and with the country.
      Don’t gamble with the country.This is a warning.

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    Udays has given some facts about Pillai, one should read and draw his/her opinion about her, without abusing Udaya. Minister GL Peiris has clearly stated in London about the stand GOSL is taking on her visit to SL and the report. The International community have to review and make their decision, people should not pass judgments.

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    Gammanpila you prick, if Pillay should not be involved in assessing the violations and abuse of human rights in Sri Lanka because she is of Tamil origin, what the f… is your President then doing appointing Sinhalese Buddhists to committees and the army appointing army officers to committees of investigation. You need to have your brain examined. Suck and lickbuddy!!!

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