Government to use Lord Naseby’s statement to counter claims

The Government says it will use Lord Naseby’s statement to counter claims on war crimes allegations against the country.

Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana told Parliamenton Saturday, the Government was grateful to the statement made on Sri Lanka by Lord Naseby at the British Parliament recently.

Lord Naseby had in his statement rejected claims that the death toll during the final stages of the war in Sri Lanka was over 40,000.

He had said that the civilian casualty toll was between 7,000 to 8,000 and not 40,000 as claimed by a UN panel.

Marapana said the Government will use the statement made by Lord Naseby at the appropriate forum to counter the war crimes allegations on Sri Lanka.

“The statement by Lord Naseby has been made with a lot of research. We should keep it as an ace,” he said.

The Minister, on a request made by some Government Ministers, said that Lord Naseby will be invited to Sri Lanka to make a statement in the Sri Lankan Parliament.

The Minister also asserted that the human rights issue in Sri Lanka will be resolved domestically.

“There are no human rights issues to be settled in an international arena anymore,” he said.

Marapana told Parliament that the United Nations and the international community have recognized the efforts taken by Sri Lanka to address the issue and so the matter has now been localised.

He said that the support received to the resolution on Sri Lanka at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva in March showed the trust and confidence Sri Lanka has obtained for the reconciliation process.

The Minister said that Sri Lanka will continue to engage with the UN Human Rights Council and the international community. (Colombo Gazette)

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