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MPs ‘have a right’ to meet IDPs

[BBC, Wednesday, 29 July 2009 07:26 No Comment]

20090521103327slanka416 The Supreme Court in Sri Lanka says it accepts the right of parliamentarians to access the Internally Displaced People’s (IDP) camps but has to give time to government to consider its position on the grounds of national security.

The court made the observation as a petition filed by United National Party (UNP) parliamentarians against the government ban on accessing the camps was taken for hearing on Monday.

The state counsel pointed out that the defence secretary is considering the requests made by the opposition MPs but needs more time to take a decision.

Accepting the argument the court granted Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa until 24 August to consider his position.

Justice Gamini Amaratunge said that the court has to give one month for the government to reconsider its ban on parliamentarians to access the IDP camps in Vavuniya.

After the hearing, speaking to journalists, general secretary of UNP Tissa Attanayake said the government should remember that the IDPs are part of the Sri Lankan community.

“There is no law to ban parliamentarians’ right to look after the wellbeing of people,” he said.

[Full Coverage]

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