Challenges to Recent HR Allegations from Amanda Hodge and Others
A recent criticism by Amanda Hodge in The Australian is one mark of the vociferous claims that human rights activists are under threat in Sri Lanka today under the new regime.Former Minister Eran Wickremeratne’s public claim in the Colombo Telegraphof 21st February that a witch-hunt is in progress and that the Swiss embassy issue had led to the unjustifiable hounding of Dharisha Bastians, Krishantha Cooray and former CID Director Shani Abeysekera adds fuel to this fire. The second of these claims is bracketed here for further comment when more information reaches us.
As the annual witch-hunt directed at Sri Lanka from the UNHRC at Geneva looms, we can benefit from recalling the role of the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, in this pantomime. Ban Ki-moon is a South Korean who has been identified as “a lackey” of USA in the same category as Kofi Annan by the Canadian activist Chris Black in an email communication on 20th January 2020. Ban Ki-moon and the UN Rehabilitation Commissioner, Navy Pillai were behind the selection of Marzuki, Sooka and Ratner to man the UN Panel of Investigation whose report has served as the foundation for the campaign mounted by the UNHCR offices in Geneva to hound Sri Lanka for human rights abuses.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (r) is greeted by IDPs (Internaly Displaced Percons) as he visits Manik Farm in Sri Lanka on May 23, 2009. AFP PHOTO/JOE KLAMAR (/AFP/Getty Images)
Dharshan Weerasekera, in Lankaweb, 15 January 2016, with this title “A rebuttal of the OHCHR Report, 1: Outright Lies”
To my knowledge, the Government has to date not commissioned an official assessment of the OHCHR report (also called the OISL report) or at any rate if it has, such report is not available to the public. And yet, one reads in the newspapers that the Government is about to start ‘the consultation process to design’ mechanisms to probe the ‘past,’ in order to satisfy recommendations made in UNHRC resolution A/HRC/30/L.29.
As the annual witch-hunt mounted by the UNHRC in its role as an arm of the Western world’s foreign policy approaches in March 2020, it is worthwhile reflecting on the ‘triumphant’ public performances in Geneva orchestrated by the Yahapaalana government and one of its driving forces, namely, Mangala Samaraweera — as presented by one of his proteges, Dharisha Bastians….. Editor, Thuppahi.
Foreign Affairs Minister Mangala Samaraweera heading the Sri Lankan Government delegation to the UNHRC’s 34th Sessionaddressing a side event at the Palais des Nations last week. The event was organised by the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the UN in Geneva and chaired by Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the UN, Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha. Secretary General of the Secretariat for Coordinating Reconciliation Mechanisms Mano Tittawella, MP and Constitutional expert Dr. Jayampathy Wickremaratne and Ariyasinha are also present –Pic by Sunanda Deshapriya
BASTIANS:Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera’s masterful diplomacy is winning over a world eager to keep believing in Sri Lanka’s political transformation story, but the Government faces a deepening disconnect with activists and war-affected constituents at home who are losing faith in its promises to heal the wounds of a long and violent conflict.
As Sri Lanka makes another crucial political transition, it faces a major risk of macroeconomic instability. Minimizing that risk will depend, above all, on whether the country’s newly elected president, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, can defy his reputation and embrace inclusive politics.
Political Editor of the Sunday Times, 5 January 2019, where the title runs “UNP leadership: Parliamentary group to decide next week”
Switzerland has publicly expressed regrets for challenging Sri Lankan “authorities’ commitment to due process” and for calling that “into question” over the saga involving an embattled staffer at the embassy in Colombo. Their about turn, embarrassingly coming down a few notches, was spelt out in an official Third Person Note (TPN) Bern sent on December 30, 2019 to the Ministry of Foreign Relations. This was after diplomatic consultations got under way with a special envoy to ease tensions between the two countries. The note was released both in Colombo and Bern simultaneously.
News Item in Island, 4 January 2019,where the title reads thus ….“BASL takes umbrage over Swiss Govt. statement”
The Bar Association of Sri Lanka yesterday took umbrage over the high handed statement issued by the Swiss government on December 30 relating to proceedings pending in the magistrates Court of Colombo over the purported abduction of one of its Colombo embassy’s local employees.
Thuppahi's Blog · This web site presents the interventions of MICHAEL ROBERTS in the public realm with reference to Sri Lankan political affairs. It will embrace the politics of cricket as well. ROBERTS was educated at St. Aloysius College in Galle and the universities of Peradeniya and Oxford. He taught History at Peradeniya University and Anthropology at Adelaide university. He is now retired and lives in Adelaide.