BY RUWAN LAKNATH JAYAKODY
Calling on the government to handover the national inquiry into allegations of war crimes to the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL), Attorney-at-Law, Dr. Prathiba Mahanamahewa said that a counter-resolution could be brought to rebut the report to be released by the Office
of the United Nations (UN) High Commissioner for Human Rights.
All information for the report to be released by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein in September was collected (even through Skype interviews) by the pro-Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), the Tamil Diaspora, he added.
There is no point in the Government of Sri Lanka submitting only a report on the modalities on how a credible domestic inquiry with international cooperation in the form of technical assistance would be conducted, he noted, adding that in view of an impending General Election, the government had refrained from appointing an inquiry team as the Opposition would start a campaign stating that the government was working against the war heroes.
Modalities could only be a national inquiry for which the modalities are already set out by the Commonwealth Human Rights Division or a modality by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Dr. Mahanamahewa remarked.
The HRCSL has Commissioners, Members and Officers who have received six months training regarding aspects like reconciliation in London, England and in Malaysia, he explained.
“What about the Presidential Commission to Investigate into Complaints regarding Missing Persons? What has the 19th Amendment and the establishment of Independent Commissions got to do with the war crimes inquiry? No team has been appointed to identify modalities.
The UN Human Rights Council (HRC) did not ask for modalities. The pro-LTTE Diaspora will oppose this. There are no guidelines in the 19th Amendment on how the Constitutional Council will be appointed.
What is our policy with regards to the Universal Periodic Review, the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission, President Maithripala Sirisena and the New Democratic Front Government’s manifesto and the 100-Day plan and the UNHRC report? What are we promising and what are we following?
Is it our foreign policy or international relations? Are we giving a solution acceptable to the Tamil Diaspora? We can go for a counter-resolution in September with the support of India and Pakistan.