Pope Francis concludes Asia trip
Sri Lanka flatly denies abuses of Tamils
Foreign minister complains of victimization
Picture: The Guardian
- AP for The Guardian
- October 2, 2013
Sri Lanka's foreign minister says his government has no case to answer over the reported deaths of thousands of civilians at the end of the country's civil war, even as pressure grows for an international inquiry to account for the dead.
The UN's top human rights official said last week Sri Lanka needed to show progress by next March or the international community should establish its own inquiry. The allegations centre on civilian casualties and summary executions in the final months of the quarter-century conflict that ended in 2009, when government forces crushed Tamil rebels.
Speaking on the sidelines of the UN general assembly on Monday, the foreign minister, GL Peiris, defended the government's efforts in investigating reported abuses by security forces, and said a commission of inquiry appointed by Sri Lanka's president in August to investigate disappearances would report back after six months.
"Sri Lanka is not stalling," Peiris said.
He contended that the Geneva-based UN human rights council and western nations were discriminating unfairly against Sri Lanka as a result of disinformation circulated by Tamil separatists overseas, and were demanding quicker action on accountability than they had of other countries that had been through tumultuous conflicts, such as the former Yugoslavia and Cambodia.
"In no other post-conflict situation has there been this intensity of pressure in such a short period of time," he said.
Full Story: Sri Lanka foreign minister denies Tamil abuses
Source: The Guardian