UN Human Rights Chief calls for transparent probe on Easter Attacks
UN Acting High Commissioner for Human Rights Nada Al- Nashif has called on the UN Human Rights Council Member States and international financial institutions to ensure Sri Lanka has fiscal space to fulfil its core economic and social rights obligations.
Delivering her statement in the UNHRC Comprehensive report and Interactive dialogue on Sri Lanka on Monday (12), the Acting High Commissioner it is essential the Government ensures an environment that respects and promotes free expression, peaceful assembly and inclusive democratic participation.
She added that the Sri Lankan Government has a fresh opportunity to steer the country on the path towards justice and reconciliation and to address the legacy of conflict.
"Continued reports of surveillance and intimidation of civil society organisations, victim groups, human rights defenders, journalists and former LTTE cadres by police, military and intelligence services are of concern. Without fundamental security-sector reforms and de-militarization of the North and the East, this pervasive culture of surveillance and oppression will not end," added the Acting High Commissioner.
She further noted that he Sri Lankan State has repeatedly failed to pursue an effective transitional justice process and uphold victims’ rights to truth, justice and reparations, adding that successive governments have created political obstacles to accountability, actively promoted and incorporated some military and former paramilitary officials credibly implicated in alleged war crimes into the highest levels of government, and have failed to present a shared understanding of the conflict and its root causes.
"Similarly, despite some suspects being charged, there has been no further progress to establish the truth about the terrible Easter Sunday bombings of 2019. OHCHR calls for an independent and transparent investigation, with international assistance should it be necessary, to pursue further lines of inquiry, in particular the role of the security establishment, in a process that guarantees the full participation of victims and their representatives," she further noted.
The Acting UN High Commissioner for Human Rights noted that the mandate granted by this Council under resolution 46/1 – to continue monitoring the human rights situation and pursue accountability for crimes under international law – is now more important than ever, and responds to the broadbased aspirations for change being expressed by Sri Lankans from all communities.