Minister of Plantation Industries Mahinda Samarasinghe yesterday declined to answer questions on the fallout of the UNHRC resolution against Sri Lanka, claiming that the human rights issues were now entirely handled by the Ministry of External Affairs. Minister Samarasinghe asked the media to contact External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris for information about the present situation of the UNHRC investigation.
Asked to comment on the preparations being made for the next UNHRC session in his capacity as the Special Envoy of the Sri Lankan President on Human Rights, Samarasinghe said he no longer held that post. Samarasinghe said that he was only the Minister of Plantation Industries and, therefore, could not comment on the issue.
Asked for his personal opinion of former UNHRC Chief Navaneetham Pillay’s retirement from the post, Samarasinghe said; “My personal opinion is not important to you and this media conference was organised to talk about the developments in the plantation sector.” Minister Samarasinghe earlier attended the UNHRC sessions as the Sri Lankan President’s Special Envoy on Human Rights.