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Sri Lankan official misrepresents discussion of UN human rights report - UN Human Rights Chief Ms Michelle Bachelet

GENEVA (27 March 2019) — UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet said Wednesday that a newspaper article quoting a senior Sri Lankan official "seriously misrepresents" her discussion of the recent UN Human Rights Office report1 on Sri Lanka with a Government delegation attending the Human Rights Council in Geneva on March 20. "Neither of these claims are true," Bachelet said. "Either the newspaper misunderstood the Governor, or the Governor misunderstood – or misquoted – me." The High Commissioner said she stands fully behind her report and the oral statement at the UNHRC. "I am deeply disappointed by the spin that has been put on my discussion with the Sri Lankan Government delegation," she said, noting that other news outlets in Sri Lanka were also continuing to significantly misrepresent the Human Rights Council process in Geneva.

Tamil Diaspora Organisations Call for Accelerated Implementation of the UNHRC Resolution on Sri Lanka and a Parallel International Criminal Tribunal

GENEVA, March 22, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The Australian Tamil Congress (ATC), the British Tamils Forum (BTF), the Canadian Tamil Congress (CTC), the Irish Tamils Forum (ITF), the New Zealand Tamil Society (NZTS), and the US Tamil Political Action Council (USTPAC) acknowledge the passing of the resolution 'Promoting reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka' (40/1) at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), and thank the Council members who worked towards it.

Sri Lanka: New UN Human Rights Council resolution must be followed with clear timeline for action -  Freedom from Torture

23 March 2019 - "New UN Human Rights Council resolution must be followed with clear timeline for action," Freedom from Torture said after the UNHRC's new resolution on Sri Lanka. 

Pakistan appreciate and acknowledge Sri Lanka's efforts

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "This council must acknowledge Sri Lanka's achievements. We as the international community and the OHCHR want to encourage and assess Sri Lanka in finding solutions and following policies in line with its international priorities and aspirations and the wishes of the people," Pakistan said today at the Interactive dialogue on the OHCHR report on Sri Lanka, at the 40th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

Statement of Pakistan

40th session of the Human Rights Council

Sri Lanka: New HRC resolution must lead to faster progress: Gov should work with the OHCHR to develop a time-bound strategy - Amnesty International

22 March 2019 -The adoption of the draft UN Human Rights Council Resolution 40/L.1 is an important step in the pursuit of justice for the victims of alleged international crimes during Sri Lanka’s decades-long internal conflict. It is disappointing, however, that the final text of the resolution failed to address Sri Lanka’s failure to meet its commitments to date.

All other promised transitional justice institutions must be established without further delay - Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "We are pleased to note that our Commission entered into a MOU with the Office of Missing Persons to streamline collaboration between our two institutions.  All other promised transitional justice institutions must be established without further delay," Ms. Deepika Udagama Nelum, Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka, said through a Video Statement at the Interactive dialogue on the OHCHR report on Sri Lanka, at the 40th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

UNHRC Resolution Passed Without A Vote: UK Encourages Sri Lanka to Accelerate for Full Implementation With a Time-bound Plan - Sri Lanka Says the  Extension of 2 Years A Mark of Recognition

Geneva, 21 March 2019 - "The resolution encourages Sri Lanka to accelerate its efforts to achieve full implementation of its 2015 undertakings and to set out a time-bound implementation plan to help it to make progress.

Only possibility for the Tamil victims to seek criminal justice is by refering Sri Lanka to the ICC or by setting up an ad hoc international criminal tribunal - Tamil National People's Front (TNPF) Leader

Geneva, 20 March 2019 -  "When Sri Lanka's most top leaders so consistently rejected criminal accountability, it is amply clear that the UNHRC is not going to deliver on the core demand of Tamil victims. Would the High Commissioner agree, at least now that it is ten years since the end of the war, that the only possibility for the Tamil victims to seek criminal justice is by refering Sri Lanka to the ICC or by setting up an ad hoc international criminal tribuna," Tamil National People's Front (TNPF) Leader Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam said yesterday at the Interactive dialogue on the OHCHR rep

Waiting in Vain: Amnesty, HRW, ICJ, Asian Forum, IMADR and LRWC Call for Justice for Victims in Sri Lanka

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - Amnesty International, Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development, Human Rights Watch, International Commission of Jurists, International Movement Against All Forms of Discrimination and Racism (IMADR) and Lawyers' Rights Watch Canada - Oral Statements today at the Interactive dialogue on the OHCHR report on Sri Lanka, at the 40th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

La Suisse déplore l’absence totale en Sri Lanka de mesures de sensibilisation expliquant à la population le lien entre traitement du passé, paix durable et prospérité économique

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "La Suisse salue l’ouverture du bureau pour la recherche des personnes disparues et l’adoption d’une loi instituant un mécanisme de réparations. Elle reste toutefois préoccupée par des retards dans la mise en œuvre des mesures de réconciliation et déplore l’absence totale de mesures de sensibilisation expliquant à la population le lien entre traitement du passé, paix durable et prospérité économique.

Ireland appreciates Sri Lanka Gov efforts, Much remains to be done

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "Ireland is pleased to note the steps taken by the Government of Sri Lanka to implement Resolutions 30/1 and 34/1. We appreciate that the Government has continued to engage constructively with UN human rights mechanisms in the period under review. Although progress has been made, much remains to be done.

Liechtenstein calls upon Sri Lanka to take necessary measures to fully implement the transitional process especially in the field of criminal accountability

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "We share the High Commissioner’s concern about the slow rate of the progress in establishing meaningful transitional justice measures. This has engendered mistrust among victims and other stakeholders. Liechtenstein calls upon Sri Lanka to take necessary measures to fully implement the transitional process outlined in the Council’s resolution 30/1, especially in the field of criminal accountability where no substantial progress had been achieved.

Germany Recommends to the Gov of Sri Lanka to establish a comprehensive and time-bound strategy on transitional justice in order to implement its pending obligations

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "We are concerned about public statements on the enforcement of death sentences – despite Sri Lanka’s international commitment to the UN moratorium on the death penalty. We also share the concerns stated in the report of OHCHR. The country must ensure the replacement of the Prevention of Terrorism Act and review all cases of detainees thereunder. Transparent and reliable jurisdiction is a key to societal reconciliation, as we know in Germany.

Widespread Frustration: Austria calls on the Gov of Sri Lanka to prepare a comprehensive strategy on transitional justice with a time bound plan

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "While we welcome improvements on a number of human rights issues in the country, progress in the government’s commitments to transitional justice has unfortunately been inconsistent and subject to considerable delay.

India Look Forward To The Full Implementation Of The 13th Amendment To The Constitution of Sri Lanka

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "We take note of the progressive implementation of the commitments made by Sri Lanka and look forward to the implementation of its other important commitments made to the international community, including the full implementation of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka. India is working closely with the Government of Sri Lanka in the implementation of various rehabilitation, resettlement and reconstruction projects.

Norway recommends that Sri Lanka develop a time-bound plan of action; Further delay could prevent from achieving a lasting solution

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "Today, ten years after the end of the war, the trust of minority communities in the process of reconciliation, accountability and human rights is being steadily eroded due to slow progress in fulfilling the commitments made under resolution 30/1. Further delay could prevent Sri Lanka from achieving a lasting solution to its ethnic issues.

Montenegro Encourages the Gov of Sri Lanka on More Effective Approach with Concrete Results: Divisions in the country do not bring any wellbeing

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - "We believe there is no alternative to reconciliation and appropriate addressing the issue of accountability, based on the truth and justice, and ensuring reparations for the victims. We still do not recognize a sufficient progress in this field and encourage the Government on more effective approach with concrete results. History shows us that any kind of divisions in the country do not bring any wellbeing.

Iceland Called Upon Sri Lanka to Create a Special Judicial Mechanism for War Crimes and Urged to Prevent Further Delays in Transitional Justice

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - Iceland noted with concern that virtually no progress has been made in investigating or prosecuting domestically the large number of allegations of war crimes or crimes against humanity collected by OHCHR in its investigation, and particularly those relating to military operations at the end of the war and called upon Sri Lanka to create a special judicial mechanism for this purpose.

Denmark calls on the Gov of Sri Lanka to establish appropriate institutional reforms within the military, intelligence and police to counter torture, sexual violence and other human rights violations

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - Denmark, addressing at the Interactive dialogue on the OHCHR report on Sri Lanka today called on the Government of Sri Lanka to establish appropriate institutional reforms within the military, intelligence and police to counter torture, sexual violence and other human rights violations.

Croatia calls on the Government of Sri Lanka to Stop the Impunity

Geneva, 20 March 2019 - The Republic of Croatia today called on the Government of Sri Lanka to stop the impunity and ensure that perpetrators are brought to justice without delay. Croatia said this aligning itself with the statement of the European Union at the  Interactive dialogue on the OHCHR report on Sri Lanka, at the UN Human Rights Council's 40th session in Geneva.

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