Mangala Samaraweera Seeks Review of Proscribed 16 LTTE Entities and 424 Individuals in the Global Tamil Diaspora.
“No Country can Take Cover Behind Concept of Absolute Sovereignty which is no Longer Valid in the Modern World”-Mangala Samaraweera
The Government is to review the ban on some diaspora groups and individuals as there is no tangible evidence to link them to the LTTE.
Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera told Parliament today that the previous government used the UN Regulation No. 1 of 2012 under UN Security Council resolution 1373 to list 424 individuals and 16 entities under Extraordinary Gazette1854/41 of 21 March 2014 in the run up to the Presidential election.
“This was done to build up the hysteria about the LTTE regrouping. They banned several Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora groups under these provisions for their alleged links to the LTTE. However, most of the organisations listed may have merely been vocal proponents of Tamil rights. There was hardly any tangible evidence to link them to the LTTE. Some of the individuals listed had even been dead for some time,” the Minister said.
He said that reviewing the list of individuals and entities is an important exercise at this juncture when the Government of President Maithripala Sirisena is seriously committed to expedite the reconciliation process.
“In doing so, the Sri Lankan diaspora whether it be Sinhala, Tamil or Muslim, has am extremely important role to play not only in taking the reconciliation process forward but they have an important role to play in taking Sri Lanka forward as a nation. Some of the best world class doctors, scientists, lawyers and other professionals who our nation can be proud of as Sri Lankans make up this diaspora and we must enable them to take part in our journey to make Sri Lanka a truly multi-racial, multi-cultural, multi-religious and multi-lingual democracy,” the Minister added.
The Foreign Minister said that the Government is committed to uphold the victory that the people of Sri Lanka achieved on 8th January by taking resolute action to strengthen democratic institutions, good governance and the rule of law and enable peaceful dissent and freedom of expression.
He said that a credible domestic investigation into allegations of violations of human rights is an important part of this process.
The Minister also noted that the Government has extended invitations to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances to visit Sri Lanka. (Colombo Gazette)