UN wants cooperation despite Colombo’s rejection of Geneva resolution: ICP
Having Sri Lanka’s genocidal military commander Major General Shavendra Silva as an adviser to UN Peacekeeping and giving more significance to Syria and North Korea than to the crimes Sri Lanka, the United Nations Secretary General and officials under him are encouraging Sri Lanka to work with the UN Human Rights Council’s mechanisms in Geneva despite Colombo categorically stating that it will not cooperate with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) after the resolution passed last week in Geneva. Mr Ban was recalling the commitments made to him on accountability by the SL President Mahinda Rajapaksa in their “Joint Statement of 2009” through a “pre-prepared answer” to ICP’s question on Tuesday. In the meantime, Colombo has extended an invitation to Mr Ban Ki-moon in May 2014 to visit the island, the ICP further reported.
“ Is this human rights, or politics? How long and how will Ban’s UN’s strange relationship with Sri Lanka continue?” questions Matthew Russell Lee of the ICP in a report filed on innercitypress.com on Tuesday.
On March 28, Ban Ki-moon mentioned his "Rights Up Front" plan, without mentioning its roots in his UN’s failure in Sri Lanka, and without taking any questions on this, he writes.
“Ban Ki-moon ended up giving Pillay only half of a second term; the ‘Rights Up Front’ plan he belatedly announced, specifically as a response to what was found to be the UN’s ‘systemic failure’ on Sri Lanka, he now presents without any reference to Sri Lanka”, he further notes.
Mr Russel Lee, in his reporting, also questions why the term ‘demilitarization’ was dropped from the UNHRC draft, while UK stressed for an investigation and the USA cited ‘undue military influence’.
“When the marked up Sri Lanka resolution was tabled, its eight operative paragraph appeared to some to simply kick the can down the road again, asking for another update from the High Commissioner for Human Rights — who soon won’t be Navi Pillay anymore,” Russel Lee observes.
“It is noteworthy that alongside its work on the Sri Lanka issue in Geneva, at the UN in New York where the UK has a Permanent Five seat on the Security Council that it uses on such issues as Syria and now Ukraine, the UK has by comparison done little,” he further writes posing another question: “While David Cameron did use the CHOGM in Sri Lanka to use raises, recently the UK co-sponsored a Commonwealth event in New York with Sri Lanka, without a word. What explains this?”
The ICP journalist also observes that the US State Department had downgraded the significance of its address on the resolution, which was scheduled to be made by Ambassador Samantha Power, by giving it to Sarah Sewall, the under secretary of state for civilian security, democracy, and human rights.