The government will today send to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) a document outlining its performance in areas of international concern to be taken up at the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) next month in Geneva, it is learnt.
The UPR is a process of evaluating the human rights records of member countries once in four years. It provides an opportunity for all countries to report on the action taken by them to improve human rights and overcome challenges to the enjoyment of human rights.
Sri Lanka’s situation was evaluated at the 2008 UPR where some members of the international community raised issues with regard to the human rights situation. The External Affairs Ministry has completed its response to be considered at the September UPR in Geneva.
When asked about the upcoming UPR, External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris said Sri Lanka’s UPR document would be sent today. However, he declined to give further details about the matters outlined in it.
The UNHRC also adopted a resolution against Sri Lanka in March, urging the Sri Lankan government to address accountability issues during the last stages of the war and to implement recommendations by the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC). The government has already prepared a national action plan to implement these recommendations.
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillai is expected to send a team of officials to Sri Lanka next month to provide technical assistance in the implementation of these recommendations. (Kelum Bandara)