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Sri Lanka warns US over allegations in WikiLeaks

[AFP, Tuesday, 21 December 2010 13:48 One Comment]

XJLoYiwkpng Sri Lanka on Tuesday warned the United States to exercise "circumspection" in diplomatic cables after a message released by WikilLeaks suggested Colombo had colluded with murderous paramilitary groups.

External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris told US Ambassador Patricia Butenis that leaked US cables contained "glaring instances of allegations totally unwarranted by the ground reality, being conveyed to Washington."

The statement released by the ministry added that Peiris "expressed the view that at least where future instances may be concerned, greater circumspection (by the US) would be appropriate."

One cable released by website WikiLeaks earlier this month said President Mahinda Rajapakse and his brothers were among those responsible for war crimes during the government’s bloody conflict with Tamil Tiger rebels.

In another leaked cable, in 2007 the then US ambassador to Sri Lanka, Robert Blake, cited "trusted embassy contacts" reporting that top officials allowed pro-government Tamil paramilitary groups to operate with impunity.

Blake is currently the US Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs.

Peiris complained of "mendacious stories" in the cables about claims of killings, and children being sold into slavery and girls forced into prostitution.

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One Comment »

  • S.V.Ramanan said:

    No point in shooting the messenger.
    ‘The cable, dated 15 January 2010, updated the Secretary of State on war crimes accountability following the end of the country’s long and bloody conflict.

    Ambassador Butenis noted there had been some limited progress in investigating potential war crimes, but noted:

    “There are no examples we know of a regime undertaking wholesale investigations of its own troops or senior officials for war crimes while that regime or government remained in power.

    “In Sri Lanka this is further complicated by the fact that responsibility for many of the alleged crimes rests with the country’s senior civilian and military leadership, including President Rajapaksa and his brothers and opposition candidate General Fonseka.”’