US Congress sub-committee hears damaging evidence on Sri Lanka given by monitoring panel

US Congress sub-committee hears damaging evidence on Sri Lanka given by monitoring panel

Washington, June 21 (EINPresswire.com): The Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations of the US Congressional Committee on Foreign Affairs on Wednesday heard damaging evidence on “Human Rights Concerns in Sri Lanka,” says Richard J Rogers of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Accountability Panel (MAP).

The Sri Lanka MAP submitted a written statement to the Subcommittee to provide information useful to its task. The MAP pointed out to the Subcommittee that:

“The GSL has been proceeding in bad faith with respect to Resolution 30/1. The latest MAP report, dated 7 March 2018, emphasized the GSL’s lack of meaningful progress to date; highlighted the government’s continued obstruction; suggested alternative avenues for redress and accountability; and set out the MAP’s renewed and additional recommendations going forward. The report calls attention to the fact that, while the GSL and international actors have dithered over the implementation of transitional justice mechanisms, serious violations of international law, including torture, have continued in Sri Lanka with impunity.”

The MAP made the following recommendations for the US Government:

1. The US should urge the UNHRC to condemn in strident and detailed terms the failure of the GSL to fulfill: (i) its commitments under Resolution 30/1 and (ii) its legal obligations to victims;

2. The US (as well as the United Kingdom, India, and other concerned governments) should dispense with purely rhetorical pressure and exercise available diplomatic and economic pressure on the GSL to comply with its obligations under international law and the UNHRC Resolution;

3. The US should fund investigations into international crimes committed by the GSL and support the use of universal jurisdiction to prosecute them;

4. The US should lobby the UN Security Council to refer Sri Lanka to the International Criminal Court;

5. The US should provide funding only for non-military uses in Sri Lanka including social justice projects, health related projects, medical and psychosocial support for victims of international crimes.”

The MAP provides independent monitoring, advice, and recommendations, focusing on the effectiveness of accountability measures from a victims’ perspective. The views and recommendations of the Panel will enable victims and other stakeholders to participate more effectively in the process and thus enhance the legitimacy of the measures.

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