U.S. Draft Resolution on Sri Lanka Promotes neither Reconciliation nor Accountability

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USTPAC Reiterates Call for Commission of Inquiry on Sri Lanka

WASHINGTON, March 5, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The United States

Tamil Political Action Council (USTPAC) expressed its deep

disappointment with the United States' draft resolution on Sri Lanka,

presented at the 25th session of the United Nations Human Rights

Council. The absence of a clear call for international investigations

into the mass atrocities of 2009 has shocked the international human

rights community, civil society and advocacy organizations like


"In light of the Sri Lankan Government's failure to act, the United

States' apparent decision to call again, for the third year in a row,

another domestic investigation by the Sri Lankan government, while not

seeking to formalize an OHCHR investigation into a Commission of

Inquiry is a profound disappointment to the victimized Tamil

community," said Dr. Karunyan Arulanantham, President of USTPAC.

UN bodies and human rights organizations have estimated that over

40,000 ethnic Tamil civilians were killed during the final months of

the war in 2009. These killings occurred as part of a systematic

program in which the Sri Lankan government designated areas, including

hospitals, as "No-Fire" zones, and then extensively bombed and shelled

those same areas.

The United States Department of State's own 2013 report on Sri Lanka

recorded deteriorating human rights climate in Sri Lanka ripe with

torture, extra-judicial killings, arbitrary arrest and detention,

attacks on journalists, and "widespread impunity for a broad range of

human rights violations." Despite overwhelming evidence of these

horrific crimes, the Government of Sri Lanka has failed to take even

modest steps to ensure accountability for the war crimes for the last

five years.

USTPAC calls on the United States' government to heed the growing

consensus in the international community, as expressed by the United

Nations' High Commissioner for Human Rights, by amending its

resolution to call for an independent international investigation in

the form of a Commission of Inquiry to investigate the atrocities

committed by both sides during the final stages of the ethnic

conflagration in 2009. "Permitting the Sri Lankan government to thumb

its nose at the international human rights community only encourages

impunity and further mass atrocities in Sri Lanka and elsewhere,"

observed Dr. Arulanantham.

Media contact: Elias Jey: 202-595-3123


Read more news from USTPAC.

SOURCE United States Tamil Political Action Council

-0- 03/05/2014

/Web Site: http://ustpac.org

CO: United States Tamil Political Action Council

ST: District of Columbia



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