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France asks Sri Lanka to end emergency, probe war crimes

07 November 2009, 15:33 CET
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(COLOMBO) - A top French envoy Saturday asked Sri Lanka to end its state of emergency and probe war crimes ahead of a key European Union ruling on trade concessions to the troubled island.

Ambassador for Human Rights, Francois Zimeray, said he hoped Colombo will signal the ending of its war with Tamil rebels in May by withdrawing emergency laws which allowed the detention of suspects for long periods without trial.

"Ending of the emergency (in force since 1983) should have been the first consequence of ending the war (in May)," he said at the end of three-days of talks with key Sri Lankan leaders on the island's human rights situation.

"The fact that the conflict is over should be an opportunity to put an end to emergency laws," he said referring to the draconian legislation which was also used in August to jail an editor for 20 years.

He echoed international calls to probe alleged war crimes in the final stages of the fighting and said Colombo should allow independent investigations to ensure that a culture of impunity did not persist.

His visit, which took place against the backdrop of a European Union probe into the island's human rights record, could influence the stance Paris will adopt in deciding future trade concessions to the island, he said.

His remarks came as Sri Lanka said the probe by the EU, the findings of which could cost the country lucrative trade concessions, was "politically motivated."

The EU report highlighted the slow resettlement of war-displaced people in camps and allegations of rights violations and torture during the decades-long conflict between the government and Tamil rebels.

"The government contests this (EU) position," the foreign ministry said in a 48-page response to the October report.

The ministry said the EU decision to order the investigation was "politically motivated and accompanied by a high degree of prejudice."

The EU could decide to suspend trading concessions worth over 100 million dollars given to Sri Lanka under a trade preference called GSP Plus.

Zimeray insisted that they were not imposing "western values" on Sri Lanka, but only wanted the island to implement its own laws in respect of protecting human rights and ensuring the rule of law.

The GSP Plus scheme offers tariff cuts for the country's key exports like clothes and ceramics.

The report also focused on the killing of an editor who was a prominent war critic and the 20-year jail term given to a Tamil editor accused of supporting the rebels. The report said there was an absence of media freedom.

Sri Lanka dismissed the notion of media suppression, saying journalists write freely and that reports of attacks on media personnel were being investigated.

Sri Lanka's Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama said he hoped the EU executive would "extensively examine" Colombo's response to the report and make a positive recommendation.


Document Actions

French request to end ER and Tissa's jail sentence

Posted by Pearl Thevanayagam at 07 November 2009, 17:35 CET
As a journalist who was arrested under a different regime in 1995 using PTA (Prevention of Terrorism Act) I count myself fortunate to be alive.

Although this detention was only for 19 hours I still relive those hours and count myself lucky.

I am now exiled in the UK but I feel for my colleagues out there in Sri Lanka. I hope other EU countries rally forces with France in forcing this govt. to change its draconian PTA through which the media is curtailed.

'Curtailed' is too mild a word to describe the track record of this government with over 37 mediaworkers brutally murdered and scores more tortured, imprisoned and abducted since 1990.

I may be crying in the wilderness for all the good that western pressure brought on this government - zilch - but as the proverb goes, "Even though ants march over a stone with their minuscule legs, they eventually etch a path."

Similarly we, the exiled journalists, will continue our fight for the release of Tissa and bring an end to media tyranny in Sri Lanka.

French request to end ER and Tissa's jail sentence

Posted by puni selvaratnam at 08 November 2009, 06:47 CET
Ending media tyranny is almost ending state terrorism on Tamils.

What Sri Lanka needs is an ACT similar to the Patriot Act that was passed in to law by George W. Bush in 2005. It is ridiculous for foreign governments to request that SL lift the emergency ban so soon after the end of war. This is when LTTE is establishing their own virtual/global government with millions of dollars. Sri Lanka needs to protect herself from LTTE and other terrorist organizations. Until some sort of a law is passed similar to the Patriot Act in U.S.A, the emergency law should not be lifted.

Posted by harry brother at 08 November 2009, 16:06 CET
What Sri Lanka needs is an ACT similar to the Patriot Act that was passed in to law by George W. Bush in 2005. It is ridiculous for foreign governments to request that SL lift the emergency ban so soon after the end of war. This is when LTTE is establishing their own virtual/global government with millions of dollars. Sri Lanka needs to protect herself from LTTE and other terrorist organizations. Until some sort of a law is passed similar to the Patriot Act in U.S.A, the emergency law should not be lifted. -dilrukshi

France asks Sri Lanka to end emergency, probe war crimes

Posted by chula wamsa at 08 November 2009, 00:17 CET
As a citizen of that country, I think the human rights situation has improved hugely. No more suicide bombings, no more child soldiers and no more war. So the most basic right is enjoyed by all the citizens alike. But I do not think it should remove any emergency laws just to please a foreign country. Rather it should do every thing to protect it's citizens from terrorist attacks. There may be still sleeper cells hidden in the cities waiting to kill innocent people indiscriminately or waiting to enroll child soldiers again. Massive stocks of deadly weapons and explosives are still being found in former terror areas. So I think it's still premature for anyone to make such requests in just 5 months after the victory, while ignoring the rights of many other countries invaded for the same reason - terrorism.

Of course we need to restore all the freedoms we lost during the conflict. I think in order to enjoy those freedoms people must be alive first.

So I think the democratic government of sri lanka has a duty to keep in place whatever laws it feels necessary to ensure it's citizens the most fundamental rights of all... The right to live.

France asks Sri Lanka to end emergency, probe war crimes

Posted by puni selvaratnam at 08 November 2009, 06:04 CET
The end of war has meant only one thing: the South will not get any more suicide bombings. But there is absolutely no change in the Northeast - it remains cut off from the rest of the country by layers of army checkpoints getting through which is hell for Tamils and not for Sinhalese. Northeast is getting more militarised(more recruitment - army commander said it would increase by 50%. More sinhalisation - EU parliamentary team visiting Sri lanka in Jne 2008 and South Indian parliamenary team visiting last month were not allowed into the East to hide the frantic Sinhalisation. Restrictions of the press has intensified in the Northeast after the fighting was over. Newspapers were burnt by the Army during Jaffna elections.
In late September the Chairman of National Peace Council(NPC) visited Jaffna and has written(his article in the website of NPC) that it remains an open prison even after the fighting has stopped.
For Sinhalese peace is absence of LTTE violence.
For Tamils things have been only worsening non-stop over the last 61 years. The whole of Northeast has been full of IDP camps and ICRC has been forced to close down its offices - so much for a Buddhist Republic. We get news that IDPs from Vavuniya are taken out in the nights and dumped in public places without any help - most have been driven around by aerial bombing and intense shelling over the last twenty years and ended up in Vanni.
Media must be allowed in to report what exactl is happening so that help can be given at the most urgent time for the people to start living. Reducing the numbers at the camps frantically to get GSP+ is the aim.
Restrictions for fishing still remains for Tamil fishermen. But Sinhalese fishermen bring internationally banned nets in trawlers protected by the Navy and plunder the seas around the Northern region according to reports by University Teachers for Human Rights.
tamils are slowly suffocated because the world will be alerted if there is a 'gas chamber'.
Human rights violators of UNHRC voted against the move by EU members in May 2009. Sri lanka has been doing expert damage control at the UN for decades. The Commonwealth has been silenced by Sri Lanka which holds a third term at CMAG of the Commonwealth though the regulation of the Commonwealth says any member cannot have a third consecutive term. Sri lanka has been cleverly manipulating even the Commonwealth countries from taking up the issue of Sri lanka though the Commonwealth has been discussing Fiji, Pakistan and Zimbabwe.
UN Secretary General ordered investigation into Gerogia when 150 people were killed. But not for Sri Lanka where tens of thousands were killed in this year alone. Sri lanka has even the UN Secretary General under its thumb because the Sri Lankan candidate withdrew and offered support to the election of Ban Ki-Moon.
There is absolutely no future for Tamils in Sri Lanka with more and more militarisation of Northeast. They are not even allowed to go to katunaike airport to get out of the country. Those students gaining University admissions abroad are arrested at the airport and not seen again.
Thosands of Tamil suspects are languishing in prisons without chatges.
Will Sri Lanka implement the recommendations in the recent reports of IBA, ICJ, ICG, AI UN and others?
Then only Tamils can be safe from state terrorism.

“garments without guilt”

Posted by Shan Saha at 08 November 2009, 07:09 CET
GSP Plus explicitly obliges Sri Lanka and other beneficiary countries to comply with 27 international agreements on human rights issues. The country last year refused to let an EU team investigate alleged abuses so the EU used independent consultants to examine whether Sri Lanka had violated the UN Convention against Torture, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the UN Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. They described a culture of “complete or virtually complete impunity in Sri Lanka”, citing police torture, abductions of journalists and uninvestigated disappearances. They also criticized the detention of almost 300,000 ethnic Tamils in internment camps.

International community blind to to Sri Lanka's tyranny and Sri Lanka dodging the international community

Posted by puni selvaratnam at 08 November 2009, 08:01 CET
1.Sri Lanka has been brushing aside the recommendations of the UN, ICJ, IBA, ICG, ... for decades
2.Sri Lanka expertly made the Southern Hemisphere to vote in its favour at UNHRC in May 2009
3.Sri Lanka holds a third consecutive term in CMAG of the Commonwealth in spite of the regulation that no member can be in CMAG for a third consecutive term.
Commonwealth has one stand on Pakistan, Zimbabwe and Fiji and another on Sri Lanka.
Now Fijian military junta sacked all the judges and Sri Lankan judges are taking up the jobs. For a long time the Sri Lankan judiciary has been politicised and its judges know how to work under a military junta. Whoelse can be better?
4.UN Secretary General ordered international investigation in Gaza and Georgia and not in Sri Lanka. He is satisfied with a national investigation. Even the US that made a scathing report is curiously satisfied with a national investigation. It's only three months ago that Amnesty International published a report on '20 years of make-believe' about numerous ''commissions'' that never produced any results. In the last few years alone the world saw how ''Commission of Inquiry'' and ''All Party Committee'' warded off sanctions at UNHRC till the ex-ambassador Dayan jayatilleke meticulously worked to get the Southern Hemisphere(including South Africa - it's intriguing to note that the South African Human Rights Commission questioned the South African Foreign Minister how its Representative in Geneva voted against its government policy!!) vote with Sri Lanka in May 2009.

Tamil Nation

Posted by csjeeva at 08 November 2009, 19:08 CET


 
Far from fearing it, the world over are dedicated to creating a new and peaceful world civilization based on principles of justice, prosperity, and continuing advancement to TAMIL NATION.

Tamil Nation reflects not only an appreciation for humanity's historic longing for peace and collective well-being, but also World understanding that humanity as a whole has now reached a new level of maturity to Tamil Nation.
Global unity is Universality of the Tamil Nation created is possible to created societies formed upon cooperation, trust, genuine concern and action for others who are in Sri Lanka.

Now, the humanity's future was failed and disunity was increased recognized. The ultimate source of danger, suffering such as national, religious and ethnic conflicts divide peoples around the globe, the imperative of building bonds of reconciliation and understanding takes on greater urgency to Tamil Nation.

Further, in efforts is the recognition that every culture and segment of humanity represents a distinct heritage that must be permitted to bear fruit in a global society

The turmoil and dislocations confronting present-day society will not be solved until both the scientific and religious genius of the human race are fully utilized. The future global civilization already exists, in embryonic form, in the Land of Tamil Nation.
In 1936, Unity of the Human Race, on the eve of the Second World War, the Guardian of the Bahá'í Faith, Shoghi Effendi, wrote a letter to the Western world that” on the establishment of a future global commonwealth”. His visionary was reiterates and develops to the next stage in the development of human civilization, still reads as though it were composed yesterday.
Even thou, the World Leaders was failed to accept the concept of Unity of the Human Race.
Here is the last HRW report:
http://www.hrw.org/[…]/sri-lanka-domestic-inquiry-abuses-smokescreen

http://pdfs.island.lk/2009/04/29/p12.pdf
What is UN Human Rights Council for “all violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law by the Government of Sri Lanka armed forces when and after conducting war against separatist rebel.”?
 
Why UN decision in war crime investigation on Israel? HRC (Human Rights Council), even though a Tamil woman is the commissioner, without Diaspora’s support that share this thought with your Jewish groups.
So Why Tamil’s issue is controlled by UN secretary General as initiated “a war crime investigation on Sri Lanka even before consider Israel?
Sri Lanka has killed more 20 000 Tamils in a single day, in order to win the war against Tamil rebels.
Is the country a member in UN, yet to allow a single international media in war zone?
Further, Disturbing extrajudicial killing videos and pictures from independent news sources which were authenticated by US experts are keeping emerging. Channel 4 released video evidence on Sri Lanka's war crimes ...25 Aug 2009 ... Channel 4 released a video footage showing Sri Lanka army torturing Tamils
www.nowpublic.com/.../channel-4-released-video-evidence-sri-lankas-war-crimes -

            
    

 

Tamil Nation

Posted by csjeeva at 08 November 2009, 19:08 CET


 
Far from fearing it, the world over are dedicated to creating a new and peaceful world civilization based on principles of justice, prosperity, and continuing advancement to TAMIL NATION.

Tamil Nation reflects not only an appreciation for humanity's historic longing for peace and collective well-being, but also World understanding that humanity as a whole has now reached a new level of maturity to Tamil Nation.
Global unity is Universality of the Tamil Nation created is possible to created societies formed upon cooperation, trust, genuine concern and action for others who are in Sri Lanka.

Now, the humanity's future was failed and disunity was increased recognized. The ultimate source of danger, suffering such as national, religious and ethnic conflicts divide peoples around the globe, the imperative of building bonds of reconciliation and understanding takes on greater urgency to Tamil Nation.

Further, in efforts is the recognition that every culture and segment of humanity represents a distinct heritage that must be permitted to bear fruit in a global society

The turmoil and dislocations confronting present-day society will not be solved until both the scientific and religious genius of the human race are fully utilized. The future global civilization already exists, in embryonic form, in the Land of Tamil Nation.
In 1936, Unity of the Human Race, on the eve of the Second World War, the Guardian of the Bahá'í Faith, Shoghi Effendi, wrote a letter to the Western world that” on the establishment of a future global commonwealth”. His visionary was reiterates and develops to the next stage in the development of human civilization, still reads as though it were composed yesterday.
Even thou, the World Leaders was failed to accept the concept of Unity of the Human Race.
Here is the last HRW report:
http://www.hrw.org/[…]/sri-lanka-domestic-inquiry-abuses-smokescreen

http://pdfs.island.lk/2009/04/29/p12.pdf
What is UN Human Rights Council for “all violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law by the Government of Sri Lanka armed forces when and after conducting war against separatist rebel.”?
 
Why UN decision in war crime investigation on Israel? HRC (Human Rights Council), even though a Tamil woman is the commissioner, without Diaspora’s support that share this thought with your Jewish groups.
So Why Tamil’s issue is controlled by UN secretary General as initiated “a war crime investigation on Sri Lanka even before consider Israel?
Sri Lanka has killed more 20 000 Tamils in a single day, in order to win the war against Tamil rebels.
Is the country a member in UN, yet to allow a single international media in war zone?
Further, Disturbing extrajudicial killing videos and pictures from independent news sources which were authenticated by US experts are keeping emerging. Channel 4 released video evidence on Sri Lanka's war crimes ...25 Aug 2009 ... Channel 4 released a video footage showing Sri Lanka army torturing Tamils
www.nowpublic.com/.../channel-4-released-video-evidence-sri-lankas-war-crimes -

            
    

 

such a hypocrisy!!!

Posted by Kavaloor. Q. at 09 November 2009, 03:33 CET
I can't understand this world of 'new order' with a lot of insistance on 'peace and freedom for the depressed'. The UN has become a puppet playground with a joker like Mr.Moon who does not realize what's going on in the earth. The likes of Rajapakhes are taking a cool ride in violating all norms of international regulations by simply taking the path of a well known 'Hitler regime'.

Let us make it so simple. If the Int'l community wanted to take hash action against a regime run by Hon.Slobodan Milosevic or by Hon.Saddam Hussein, then the so ruthless regime of Mr.Mahinda Rajapakhse is not at all better in any form. To make it more simplistic, it is the worst even more worse than Adolf Hitler.

The poor jews had to suffer in the hands of Hitler as like the tamils in the hands of sinhala ruthless regime like Rajapakse.

Tamils need freedom in a separate land "Tamil Eelam". That is the only day when sinhalese will have their freedom to enjoy for the rest of their years.