Tamil Information Centre
User Name:   
Password:   
  Remember Me  
Sign up  |  Forget password
Home   
Search
    Contact us
UK demands full implementation of Geneva Resolutions on Lanka Says US pullout from Geneva body irrelevant
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Saturday)

The UK government has again dismissed Lord Naseby’s call to terminate Geneva Resolution 30/1 in 2015 and Resolution 34/1 in 2017 on the basis that the then President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s government didn’t perpetrate war crimes as alleged by the UN.

Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon (Con) on Wednesday (Feb. 05) during a House of Commons debate on UNHRC Resolution declared that the UK expected the full implementation of both Resolutions.

The following is the full text of Lord Ahmad’s statement: "I make the Government’s position clear from the outset: Her Majesty’s Government have no plans to annul or withdraw those resolutions. The UK continues to believe that full implementation is essential, as the noble Baroness, Lady Northover, and the noble Lord, Lord Collins, made clear. Without truth, justice, and guarantees of non-recurrence, there can be no lasting reconciliation. In co-sponsoring Resolution 30/1, the Government of Sri Lanka also sent a clear signal that they recognised this.

"My noble friend Lord Naseby rightly noted that the United States co-sponsored the resolutions. As I have said before from the Dispatch Box, we deeply regret the decision of the United States Government to resign from the Human Rights Council. However, as leader of the resolutions core group, we remain determined to see them implemented in full. To that end, and following consultation with the core group, I am pleased to notify your Lordships’ House that Canada and Germany have agreed to join the United Kingdom, Macedonia and Montenegro as alternate sponsors. Both Canada and Germany share our understanding of the importance of achieving reconciliation in Sri Lanka. At the same time, the US remains a strong external supporter of the resolution and an advocate for progress, a point made by the noble Baroness, Lady Northover.

"On 21 March 2018, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights rightly recognised the steps taken since January 2015 to improve the human rights situation in Sri Lanka, a point well made by my noble friend Lord Framlingham. We echo that report. As the UK’s Human Rights Minister, I welcome progress on the restoration of important democratic checks and balances, improvements in respect for freedoms of expression and movement, the return of land held by the military to civilians, the establishment of the Office on Missing Persons, the ratification of the convention on enforced disappearances, and the passing into law of, and budget allocation for, the Office for Reparations Bill.

"My noble friend Lord Sheikh raised the important issue of land rights. We welcomed the Sri Lankan Government’s instruction to the military in 2016 that all land obtained from civilians should be released at the latest by 2018. However, as of January 2019, some land is still to be released. We encourage land returns. I assure noble Lords that, as a friend of Sri Lanka, we continue to support the return of land to civilians through direct funding for demining activities—mentioned by my noble friend—in the north of the country. In August 2018, my right honourable friend the Minister for Asia, Mark Field, announced a further £1 million increase in funding to support family resettlement and peacebuilding. From a governance perspective, while progress clearly still needs to be made, it is clear that Sri Lankans do not live in the same climate of fear that existed under the former Government, and that people now have greater confidence to speak openly and honestly, and with rising media freedom, about the challenges faced by the country. This point was well made by the noble Lord, Lord Low.

"On the issues that confront the country, it is clear that the pace of change has been disappointingly slow, as the noble Baroness, Lady Northover, recognised. We must see further and faster progress by Sri Lanka towards implementing its commitments under Resolution 30/1. I will outline the further steps on four key issues. First, as the noble Lord, Lord Collins, reminded the House, is the establishment of a transitional justice mechanism, including a truth and reconciliation commission. Second is the urgent repeal and replacement of the Prevention of Terrorism Act. I assure the noble Baroness, Lady Northover, that the British high commission in Colombo is in regular contact with government officials, including Tamil National Alliance MPs and civil society representatives, about the situation of detainees held under the PTA. We also continue to work on this issue with other diplomatic missions, including the EU and UN bodies.

"The noble Baroness also asked whether funding for the Office on Missing Persons has been included in the budget. I understand that that office has now been established and is operating. However, a final decision has yet to be taken on funding the establishment of the Office for Reparations.

"This underlines the important fact that the legacy of Sri Lanka’s recent conflict can be addressed and lasting reconciliation achieved only if we see further progress in this regard. As the noble Baroness also rightly pointed out, there were deep concerns over recent political developments at the end of 2018, when President Sirisena dissolved the Parliament, in an apparently unconstitutional manner, in an attempt to dismiss Prime Minister Wickremasinghe and install former President Rajapaksa in his place. "Ultimately, the peaceful resolution of the 51-day crisis was a welcome indication of resilience, as noble Lords have recognised. We need to recognise the progress that has been made in Sri Lanka’s judicial and democratic institutions and on the effective checks and balances between state powers. This is an important step forward, but there were 51 more days when progress towards reconciliation came to a halt.

"We have repeatedly urged the Government of Sri Lanka to go further and faster. On 21 January, I met the Minister of Finance and Mass Media, Mangala Samaraweera, in London. He has been a strong supporter of Sri Lanka’s commitments to Resolution 30/1. It was a pleasant and constructive meeting, during which he took the opportunity to engage directly with representatives of the diaspora in the UK, including members of the Tamil community. My honourable friend the Minister for Asia and the Pacific did the same when he met Foreign Minister Marapana and a number of other Sri Lankan Ministers and officials in Colombo last October. Last September, the UK led a statement on behalf of the core group at the 39th session of the Human Rights Council, urging Sri Lanka to prioritise and drive forward the implementation of its commitments.

"The noble Baroness, Lady Northover, asked questions about CSSF funding. We are providing £8.3 million for the current period and are evaluating projects and proposals for continued funding. She also asked whether the President would appoint commissioners for the Office on Missing Persons. We hope and expect that President Sirisena will appoint commissioners who command the full support of all communities.

"The noble Lord, Lord Collins, asked an important question about the current situation in terms of accountability. There has been progress. The British Government are a friend of Sri Lanka and have supported projects to ensure a zero-tolerance approach to rape and gender-based violence in Sri Lanka. This has included the funding of a helpline for victims of domestic abuse and increasing police support for women and children. I assure him that the UK continues to support efforts by the Sri Lankan Government to develop a more professional and accountable police force, including increasing gender-sensitive policing. We have raised issues across the whole spectrum of human rights and continue to support various NGOs working in the community, including support for the Sri Lankan LGBT community.

"Let me be very clear and assure all noble Lords that the United Kingdom is a friend of Sri Lanka. We have made a long-term commitment to work with Sri Lanka on improving human rights and supporting the rebuilding of the country after three decades of conflict. Our £8.3 million of funding over three years is an example of this. On the strength of our relationship, I know that my noble friend Lord Sheikh mentioned the positive outreach conducted by the high commission here in London. I very much look forward to paying tribute to the breadth and strength of our bilateral relationship with Sri Lanka when I speak at the Sri Lankan high commission tomorrow to recognise and celebrate Independence Day.

The UK remains convinced that Resolution 30/1 must be implemented in full if Sri Lanka is to achieve the long-term reconciliation that all its people need and, we all recognise, truly deserve. We recognise that progress has been made, as my noble friend highlighted in tabling this debate, but we also believe that—with a concerted effort by Sri Lanka and support from co-sponsors including the United Kingdom, as well as external advocates including the United States, the European Union and the UNHRC—Resolution 30/1 can be fully implemented, allowing Sri Lanka to realise the true potential we all seek, as a stable prosperous country providing growth and opportunities for all Sri Lankans."

Source: The Island

 

Share on Facebook


 Latest 25 News/ பிந்திய 25 செய்திகள்:
Tamil Information Centre (TIC) expresses grief over brutal, cowardly attacks on churches and other places in Sri Lanka
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Monday)
அனுபவம் மிக்க சிரேஸ்ட தொகுப்பாளர் N.T Jegan அவர்களோடு info4tamils இணைய வழி தொலைக்காட்சியினூடக கண்காட்சி பற்றிய கலந்துரையாடல்
பிரசுரிக்கபட்ட திகதி: 09/02/2019 (வியாழக்கிழமை)
இலங்கைத் தமிழர்கள்: காலவரையறையற்றதொரு பாரம்பரியம் என்ற கண்காட்சிதொடர்பான தமிழ் தகவல் நடுவத்தின் (TIC) உத்தியோகபூர்வ அறிக்கை
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Thursday)
கண்ணீர் அஞ்சலி
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Thursday)
Report reveals bone samples belong to 1499-1719 AD era
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Monday)
Northern Province’s Economic Development Framework
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Monday)
OMP welcomes inclusion of its interim relief proposals in budget
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Monday)
Raghavan to take public concerns to UNHrc
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Saturday)
Jaffna to get Olympic-standard aquatic complex
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Saturday)
Treat women and girls with respect - EDITORIAL
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Saturday)
Vandalizing archaeological sites - Cabinet approves upping fines, jail terms
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Saturday)
Right time to abolish executive presidency - JVP
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Saturday)
International Court Of Justice & The ‘Ceylon Tamils’
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Saturday)
British Tamil Students Build War-Torn Mullaitivu's First Media Centre
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Friday)
Joint Press Release: Sri Lanka sends war crimes denier to Geneva as part of official delegation.
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Thursday)
Karannagoda drags Gota into mass murder case
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Monday)
Tamils’ Hopes Fading: Every Village Is Sinhalese? Rāghavan Sacked?
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Sunday)
106 Tamil Diaspora Groups Jointly Urge UNHRC Not to Give any more Additional Time to Sri Lanka - Urge to Refer to ICC
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Sunday)
Ten Years After A War Without Witnesses: Global Tamil Forum Calls To Ensure Sri Lanka Firmly Remains On The UNHRC Agenda
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Sunday)
Human Rights Council 40: UK Statement for the Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the Protection of Human Rights while Countering Terrorism
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Saturday)
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, while speaking at the Kilinochchi District development review meeting, blamed the Northern Provincial Council authorities, saying that they have almost become inactive towards the problems faced by the people in North.
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Friday)
Ranil blasts Northern Provincial Council
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Friday)
Approval for TRC mechanism Navi Pillay blasts Govt
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Thursday)
A New ‘Washington Consensus’ ‘Indo–Pacific’ and India’s Emerging Role
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Thursday)
US resumes Millennium Challenge aid to Sri Lanka
Published Date: 09/02/2019 (Thursday)
Donate
Support our work to bring rights to life in any way big or small
 Amount:

Donate using PayPal

Select dates to view
past and future events
<<<Aug - 2019>>>
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
    123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728293031
 Stand up for Rights and Justice
Grant 18 year old Saudi Woman Rahaf asylum in the UK
Read more...
Take Action
Trump’s child hostages
Set Noura Free -- sign now!
Tamil men accuse continuing torture in Sri Lanka Take a stand against torture and urge UN Human Rights commission for human rights to investigate
Latest Publication
Proto Sumero Dravidian: The Common Origin of Sumerian and Dravidian Languages Conference Report:

Proto Sumero Dravidian: The Common Origin of Sumerian and Dravidian Languages

Read more...

Thiruvalluvar
About us
Site Help
Getting in touch
Other
Facebook Youtube twitter
Sitemap  |  Privacy Policy  |  Terms and Conditions
Copyright © 2019 ticonline.org, All rights reserved.