A look back at incidents that transpired at UNHRC in relation to SL

A look back at incidents that transpired at UNHRC in relation to SL

Written by Keshala Dias

23 Mar, 2017 | 8:43 pm

Here is a brief look back at the incidents that transpired at the UNHRC in relation to Sri Lanka.

* On the 2nd of June 2011, a large of number of Sri Lankans residing in European              countries, staged a demonstration opposite the UN office in Geneva, Switzerland to protest the Darusman report.

  •  The following year, the United States, along with forty co-sponsors, tabled the Draft Resolution on Sri Lanka titled Promoting Accountability and Reconciliation in Sri Lanka, at the 19th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council.
  • On March 22, 2012, the Resolution was passed with 24 votes in favour, 15 votes against and 08 abstentions.
  •  In May 2012, the government announced the appointment of a Task Force and the National Plan of Action to implement the recommendations of the lessons learnt and Reconciliation Commission.
  • The UN Human Rights Council in March 2013, passed a highly critical Resolution urging Sri Lanka to conduct an independent and credible investigation into alleged war crimes.
  • Following a week long visit in the country at the invitation of the Sri Lankan government in August 2013, then UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay accused the government of eroding democracy and the rule of law.
  •  In June 2014, the High Commissioner appointed three distinguished experts, to play a supportive and advisory role, as well as independent verification throughout the investigation.
  •  In September 2015, following the election of Maithripala Sirisena as President, Sri Lanka rejected a UN call for international involvement in an investigation into war crimes. Later that year in October, it co-sponsored a UN Human Rights Council Resolution.
  •  In February 2016, the newly appointed UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Prince Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein visited Sri Lanka. He described it as a much more friendly, cooperative and encouraging visit than his predecessor endured in August 2013.
  • -Addressing the 32nd Session of the UN Human Rights Council, Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera made several pledges which included the establishment of a permanent and independent Office on Missing Persons.

Though the Bill on the establishment of the Office on Missing Persons was passed in Parliament, it is not operational as yet.

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