16 May, 2022

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UNHRC 49th Session: Foreign Affairs Minister’s Speech – Full Text

49th session of the Human Rights Council – High Level Segment Statement by Prof. G.L. Peiris, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka

Mr. President,

Sri Lanka is an active participant in the multilateral framework to realize the promotion and protection of human rights.

Fundamental rights are embodied in our Constitution, progressively advanced through our democratically elected organs of government and enforced through our independent judiciary. Despite multiple challenges we have faced from terrorism, we have restored peace, security and the rule of law throughout the country. Our democratic traditions and independent institutions ensure free and fair elections at regular intervals through universal adult franchise. We will further advance the considerable progress we have made in post-conflict recovery and healing. For this, we have put in place domestic institutions for reconciliation, accountability and social justice.

Through this Council, we have completed 3 mutually beneficial Universal Periodic Reviews, engaged in constructive dialogue with the Treaty Bodies, welcomed Special Procedures Mandate Holders, and held frank and open discussions with domestic and international interlocutors. We have benefitted from the considerable expertise available with the UN on human rights including through its technical cooperation and capacity building programs. Through the UN country team, we value the ongoing support to our domestic processes on reconciliation and achievement of SDGs.

Through this cooperative interaction, and in line with our domestic framework and international obligations, we continue to ensure the promotion and protection of human rights and social justice for all our citizens, irrespective of ethnic and religious identity and political affiliation.

Mr. President,

Despite the economic setbacks due to the Covid 19 pandemic, we continue to ensure our people’s right to development. Sri Lanka has improved its global rank by 7 positions according to the latest SDG Report. We appreciate the contribution made by our civil society partners, through their extensive grass-roots level outreach and expertise.

As a developing Member State of the international community, we brace ourselves to face the further adverse economic consequences of crises, such as the pandemic and the unravelling conflict in Europe, which will impact on our efforts to achieve the SDGs.

Mr. President,

We are today in a period of review of the work of the Council. We reflect on whether the Council has been successful in overcoming the credibility gap that led to the downfall of its predecessor Commission.

The multilateral architecture for the implementation of human rights was progressively developed in the last decades. Consensus was forged on key principles which we consider sacrosanct, such as that the promotion and protection of human rights should be guided by the principles of impartiality, objectivity and non-selectivity, based on the sovereign equality of Member States. UNGA resolution 60/251 and HRC resolutions 5/1 and 5/2 also decided that the working methods of the Council shall be transparent, fair and impartial, and shall enable genuine dialogue.

In March 2021, the Council voted on Resolution 46/1 which was tabled without the consent of Sri Lanka as the country concerned. The consideration of this matter polarized and politicized this forum. In a startling departure from the mandate which the UN General Assembly originally conferred on this Council, operative paragraph 6 of this resolution refers to a so-called evidence-gathering mechanism, a measure that was strongly opposed by a number of countries. Such initiatives create disharmony both in the domestic and international arenas. It creates obstacles to reconciliation efforts, breeds hatred by reopening past wounds, and polarizes society.

Mr. President,

Member States have mandated this Council and its Secretariat with a truly extensive array of helpful working methods to assist Governments in the promotion and protection of human rights. Sri Lanka has participated actively and constructively in those aspects of the Council’s work that have been productive and beneficial, and which have helped to ensure that our people live safer, longer, and more dignified lives. We reject those that are punitive, politicized, divisive, unhelpful and initiated due to extraneous reasons.

Mr. President,

As elsewhere in the world, we endeavor to strike a just balance between human rights and national security when dealing with terrorism. Sri Lanka is convinced that counter-terrorism legislation must secure and protect the rights of persons subject to investigation detention and trial, and must not restrict democratic freedoms such as the freedom of expression. With these objectives in view, I recently presented a Bill in the Parliament of Sri Lanka which is an initial step in amending the Prevention of Terrorism Act, 43 years after it was promulgated.

We take particular objection to the use of voluntary funding which has the necessary consequence of undermining objectivity and detachment. Against this background, Sri Lanka once again reiterates its view that the evidence gathering mechanism established under OP 6 of resolution 46/1 is unhelpful to the people of Sri Lanka, will polarize Sri Lankan society, and adversely affect economic development, peace and harmony at a challenging time. It is an unproductive drain on Member State resources, at a time of severe financial shortfalls across the entire multilateral system including the High Commissioner’s Office.

Mr. President,

On the 4th of March the Council will meet in an interactive dialogue on Sri Lanka. I look forward to sharing with you some thoughts on the written update on Sri Lanka.

Thank you.

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Latest comments

  • 20
    1

    Lies come easily to our Minister of Foreign Affairs, G.L. Peiris.

    • 9
      1

      You mean Minister of Lies

      • 6
        1

        Nathan GLP is not the only Professor in Lanka who mastered such skills, he became a minister because he was good at it. Rajapaksas recognized the hidden talent in him and that Parkinson facies comes very handy. Jehan P considers him as one of the greatest in this business.

        • 9
          1

          To summarize the whole speech of Silly Lanka Law Prof, “evidence gathering system is an impediment for reconciliation, adversely affect economic development ???? and unproductive drain on member state resources !!!”. 1) Evidence gathering is an impediment ??? I guess Law Prof is recommending Ganasara’s one family, one law as adequate. 2) According to GLP if not for evidence gathering, Lankan economy would have flourished so that we will be “prosperous and splendor”. 3) Lanka, a prime example for unproductive drain, now surviving on loans showing concerns for member states who are voluntarily contributing is ultimate comedy.

    • 2
      1

      What you mean, “Synonymous with GLP”

    • 6
      1

      I have no doubt GLP would surely collapse before international leaders, not being able to cover the brutal regime of srilanken Mugabe. His heart would not bear the size blatant lies, the mision is going to put before IC.
      :
      To my knowledge GLP is said to have obtained his PhD from Oxford though he is now hired by Rajapakshe rascals for their greedy politics. The kind of profs – mother lanka to have produced is a greater shame. Had late Mr Kadirgamar been alive, things would not have gone this far.
      :
      That laughing stock, Jayasumana (arsenic god natha dewiya) is also in that delegation. Why not KAPUTA aka Basil did not join ? He could teach the world good lessions, if the bugger would have been part of the delegation. I think …… as nothing can reverse, Medamulana buffaloes have ruined this beautiful country as of today.
      :
      Senile Chamal Rajapakshe hurting the same age makes it clear that 1 kg of rice could be used for 2 person for a week. These men became rich not because of any kin dof walawaa, but looting the last cent of the nation. They were known as WEERAKETIYA cattle thieves in 70ties.

    • 5
      13

      Nathan,
      “Lies come easily…”

      Truth is a bitter pill to swallow for guys suffering from ‘Defeat-Syndrome’.

      • 3
        2

        EE bp/
        U see things upside down because u are sitting on ur little head/ u the kind of bps paved the way looters to return/ now the consequences are before ur eyes/🐃🐃🐃🐃🐃I dont want to insult buffaloes but u are a curse😶😶😶😶😶😶😶

  • 20
    3

    What an apology this pathetic figure is, for a one time academic and professor of a hallowed institution, and of the laws at that.

    Poor effete GL, I guess that he has to continue to sing for his supper, and for his unlimited supply of diesel to power his generator.

    The law of the land is supposed to be grounded in principles of fair play, ethics and morals, and those who profess to teach it, to walk the talk in those respects.

    But in Rajapaksa land, scavengers like GL keep licking boots for his mess of pottage.

    • 6
      1

      What a load of nonsense is this man trying portray ; a professor at that trying to tell the world community. There is no substance in his address and its full of lies. Why is he wasting our time
      He is also talking about PTA amendment Bill, as if its the panacea for all Sri-Lanka’s ills. He is professional time waster and insincere in his utterance. It is 13 years since the armed conflict ended and what progress has the GOSL achieved to mitigate the woes of affected parties.
      ZERO progress is the ONLY answer

  • 5
    1

    Hunched to the appropriate ……… in deference ………

    Another day ……. 2500 years and counting ………..

  • 4
    3

    (PartI)
    “In March 2021, the Council voted on Resolution 46/1 which was tabled without the consent of Sri Lanka as the country concerned. The consideration of this matter polarized and politicized this forum.”
    What is this Ex- Law Professor ‘Joker’ talking about, ‘through his hat’?
    Insomnia? Is it? Or Amnesia? Whichever it is, seriously does not matter!
    Sri Lanka, did withdraw the then existing Joint Resolution 30/6 in 2021 sessions, without giving/submitting a replacement resolution in place at that time.
    SL did not participate in the UNHRC proceedings or introduce any replacement, thereafter and SL authorities, thought ‘that the matter will go to roost’, probably on the advice professed by the Law Professor himself!
    Because the country, withdrew from the proceedings, the council did not feel fit to refer further anything on the matter to Sri Lanka!
    How and why would anyone think Sri Lankan and their professor would wake up a YEAR after the event and claim, “No one consulted us (Sri Lanka) from the UNHRC?”
    What are we trying to portray, that, Sri Lankans do not value and uphold international obligations?
    Or is it an exhibition of “village cunningness”?? That may not help in the long run!!!

  • 4
    2

    (PartII)
    No wonder,
    1. The much hyped Reconciliation process has taken 13 years thus far with no tangible results
    2. The Reparation process has taken 13 years thus far with no tangible results.
    3. The repealing the PTA has not happened and leads to much abuse throughout Sri Lanka.
    4. After 12½ years a draft legislation to amend PTA to align with international obligations, under the guidance of this Professor in parliament and found inconsistent with aspirations!!
    5. Let the genocide part alone for separate dealings as necessary, near future
    This is the slumbering approach of Sri Lankans and as it is, the manner an international agency has been treated, no wonder, they are not too enamoured with the “Smart About Turn”, are much inclined to get Sri Lanka’s opinion to proceed on the matter at hand – Reconciliation, Reparation and possible Genocide of the Sri Lankan community and minorities!!
    WHO IS TO BE BLAMED FOR THIS SHOW OF UTTER DISREGARD, IMPUNNITY, DISMAY AND MORASS???
    “God only knows”!!!
    Is It Professor Gamini Luxman Peiris – Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic, or able assistant Professor Jayanath Colombage as the Secretary (Principal Accounting Officer of the same Ministry) to be scalped???

    • 1
      5

      Mahila,
      “The Reparation process has taken 13 years thus far with no tangible results.”

      According to Collins English Dictionary ‘Reparation is help or payment that someone gives you for damage, loss, or suffering that they have caused you.’

      Tamils started the war against Sinhalayo and caused damage, loss and suffering to them. Therefore, Tamils should pay reparation to Sinhalayo for the damage and suffering caused by the war. But so far nothing has been done to help Sinhalayo who are the victims of the war. Strangely, Tamils who waged war against Sinhalayo get compensation for various things. What a funny world!

    • 1
      5

      Mahila,
      “The much hyped Reconciliation process has taken 13 years thus far with no tangible results”

      You are right. Despite all the work done for reconciliation, there are Tamil politicians who say ‘‘Sinhalayo are not welcome in the North’; ‘Buddhist temples cannot be built in the North’; ‘Buddha statues cannot be erected in the North’ as if they own northern part of the country.
      If the reconciliation process worked, Tamils should have apologized to Sinhalayo for the crimes committed against them for three decades and invite Sinhalayo who were chased out from NE to return and live with Tamils.
      What a waste of scarce resources in the name of reconciliation!

      • 5
        0

        Evil you should have gone to Geneva instead of GLP. Madam is disappointed with his performance.

  • 3
    2

    (PartIII)
    Or, is it a simplified case of one too many PROFESSORS getting confused of the issues at hand and floundering around, like ‘drunken sailors painting the town Red’, without a mission, vision and comprehensive focus??
    I think it is their sheer incompetence and ineptness to handle the subject of ‘Foreign Affairs’!!!!
    ‘Round pegs in Square holes or vice versa’??
    They had enough and more time to “Pull up their trousers and get their ‘March perfect to Position’ and “hold fast the Game” in the name of Sri Lanka and for Sri Lankans to save them from ignominy.
    We have 225 Jokers already, in the house and we (Sri Lankans) can well do without these two and move forward!!!!
    Unfortunately, the elder Professor is the head of the ruling party and does not help to project the image of the President, PM and Finance Minister any better!!!
    Very Sad, indeed.

  • 3
    1

    Medamulna rowdies excreted. Some of these lowyers are pulling that cart to clean it. The god or godless who gave intelligence to Ali & GLP to pass law tests must regret their mistake. Justice is about a lawyer’s job. These two donkeys, after qualifying in law, are pulling the cart to cover Royals’ dirt. One time there was talk that Hitler King confessed to America and promised them to correct the mistakes and that is how he had his citizenship canceled. In that situation, if Ali Donkey and GLP Donkey deny the war crime, how are they going to judge these fools? GLP fools that he is bringing the change to PTA. (It is not yet passed). Why almost all Western Nations have said that the changed GLP proposed is only fooling the UNHRC in March. Then what an idiot Silly Sally Cuckoo GLP is now to claim in UNHRC that “I did it!”. It is peak of the shameless slavery to Royals. World knows Royals are criminals. But now only they are coming to what a worthless slaves are Ali & GLP.

    • 2
      3

      Mallaiyuran,
      “World knows Royals are criminals.”

      Who are the real criminals; those who massacred Sinhala Buddhists for three decades to grab their land to create a separate State for Tamils in Yapanaya or those who eliminated them and restored peace in this country?

  • 7
    1

    This joker GL is just a mouth piece utters nonsense for survival. He is so greedy about the position this guy is ready to lick even a devil. Oh what a SL professor he is and one of the top Sri lankan intelectuals and sppech writer. No wonder the country has joined the queues. This clown just utters but no one cares. Even local illiterate parliamentarians dont respect the guy and treat him as a great joker.

  • 3
    11

    It is a pity that G.L. Peiris did not tell UNHRC to punish those who really committed war crimes and crimes against humanity after waging war against the Government of Sri Lanka and Sinhala Nation and massacred Sinhala Buddhists for three decades and now pretending as victims of the war.

  • 6
    1

    I hear this time around SB, Muslims, Catholics/Christians,Tamils — are all going to Geneva. Wait a minute , who is going to support or use veto to save Rajapaksas, none other than Putin and China. (Harsha . G please note). Recently a higher ranking Russian Foreign Service guy was in Lanka with a special message from Putin,assuring support to them (as usual). I guess the guy forgot, to warn them about Putin invading Ukraine.

  • 3
    1

    Be happy dreams come true.

    Rajapakse’s boyie kolluwa gets to speak at the UN.

    Cartada Adambara?

  • 6
    0

    GLP is a “Slave” available to provide service to the highest bidder. We have seen him as a monkey jumping from party to party and on his way changing his own policies to adhere to the ideals of the party he then belongs to. He has no character or honesty in him. Sending such a person to the UN itself is an error as the members of the UN clearly know what type of a person he is.

    He has repeatedly told lies to the UN and none of his promises have been delivered. He is a scapegoat used by the Rajapakse Family just to buy time for not doing anything. Who can say that there is no racism in SL? Who can say that there are no military/police illegal arrests in SL? Who can say that the Judiciary is not corrupt in SL? Above all who can say that the ruling family is not corrupt in SL? For a person who is supposed to be highly educated to stand before an international body and lie year after year would show the world that Sri Lankan Government is not a reliable partner.

    The only way the international body would have any positive response from SL is to impose a travel ban and restrictions on bank transactions of the entire Rajapakse Family, Police and Armed Forces seniors, Ministers in Charge of Judiciary, Defense and Police and the Chief Justice and Attorney General.

    • 1
      2

      Buddhist 1,
      “Who can say that there is no racism in SL?”

      You are right. There is racism. That is racism of Tamil politicians in Yapanaya towards indigenous Sinhala Buddhists that has prevailed in Sinhale from 1930s.
      GG Ponnambalam started the anti-Sinhala Buddhist campaign in 1939 by delivering a racially charged speech at Nawalapitiya ridiculing Mahawansha and denigrating the Sinhala-Buddhist culture, its history and the people.

      • 0
        1

        Isn’t Mahawansha a fiction with some historic facts, it’s definitely not a historic record. If not how can a lion mate with a human and produce human children? Even the new chapters do they talk about the 1983 race riots or the number of times LTTE chased the military from their territory?

  • 3
    2

    I didn’t read this speech, because it is delivered by an “ASSOCIATE/REPRESENTATIVE” of a “Criminal Gang” of Rajapakse & Co. and Cohorts who have committed many crimes (murder, fraud, etc.) and have still not been cleared of many “Accusations” against “Humanity”. I also do not know how the “Members” of that august “Assembly” of UNHRC listen to such an “Associate/Representative” from Sri Lanka.

  • 2
    2

    A clear example of a Mountain Spring that flowed into Mud.

    A Professor of Law in his 30s taking over from a more Snr.academic Prof.TNadarajah
    [Son-in-Law of Sir.Arunachalam Mahadeva] sky was the limit for GL.
    Soon he became Vice-Chancellor and also a prolific author of several Text Books on Law related matters.
    Then came his foray into Politics! Cabinet Minister in the Govt:of CBK, where he and Dr.Neelan Tiruchelvam brought out a balanced proposal for a new constitution that did address minority aspirations.Fell out with CBK and teamed up with the UNP and Ranil W,until he walked into the jaws of the Rajapakses.

    Well then this is GLs Bio-Data or shall I CALL IT THE CURRICULUM-VITAE?

    When Shakespeare created Macbeth did he also extend his play four centuries forward?

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