Category Archives: war reportage

Extremist Fervour as Roadblock for Reconciliation: A High Profile Example from the Galle-Lit-Fest

RK Radhakrishnan, in The Hindu, 2011 (?)https://www.thehindu.com/books/books-reviews/reconciliation-elusive-on-the-ground/article6164031.ece

The packed hall at the Galle Literary Festival was stunned into silence by a series of abuses hurled on a Sri Lankan human rights activist by a member in the audience. The hurler of abuses, a well-known journalist, questioned the activist’s patriotism, labelled her pro-Tiger, and described her as a ‘stooge’ of the Western nations. Oh yes, that was just the printable part.

The activist at the receiving end was Sunila Abeysekera. She was one of the panelists on ‘Aftershock: The lingering legacy of civil war,’ presented by the BBC World Service. Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and event moderator Bridget Kendall (BBC’s diplomatic correspondent) were on stage. The exchange presented a clear idea of the differing perceptions on the concept of reconciliation.

Rajpal Abeynaike

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Facing the Geneva Threat: Lessons not Learnt

Neville Ladduwahetty, Island 29 January 2020, in with this title “GENEVA: Lessons NOT Learnt”

 

Lady Justice reading a book

According to a report in The Island of January 23, 2020, Minister Keheliya Rambukwella had stated “that the new government’s stand on the Geneva accountability resolution would be based on the position taken by former Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana, P.C. on behalf of the previous government…”.

“The Government of Sri Lanka at the highest political levels, has both publicly and in discussions with the present and former High Commissioner for Human Rights and other interlocutors, explained the constitutional and legal challenges that preclude it from including non-citizens in its judicial processes. It has been explained that if non-citizen judges are to be appointed in such a process, it will not be possible without an amendment to the Constitution by 2/3 of members of the Parliament voting in favour and also the approval of the people at a referendum”.

 

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When Vengeance drives Human Rights Recrimination on the World Stage: The Ban Ki-moon Story

Michael Roberts

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)       

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Chandraprema to beard the UNHRC Den in Geneva

Item in NewsInAsia, 19 January 2020, where the title is “Veteran columnist C.A.Chandraprema appointed as Lankan envoy at the UN in Geneva”

 Veteran Sunday Island columnist, C.A.Chandraprema, has been appointed as Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative at the United Nations in Geneva, within which is located the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

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Sampanthan’s Devious Reasoning and Twisted Historical Review

Rajeewa Jayweera, in Island, 18 January 2020, where the title runs President’s policy statement and Sampanthan’s amnesia” … with underlining emphasis being i positions by The Editor, Thuppahi

During the two-day adjournment debate on the policy statement delivered by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Tamil National Alliance (TNA) leader R Sampanthan’s outburst had more holes than a target sheet in a firing range (and Swiss Ambassador Hanspeter Mock’s charge of the abduction, molestation, and interrogation by unknown persons of embassy minor employee Garnier Banister Francis aka Sriyalatha Perera).

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Barefaced Lies in the OHCHR REPORT from Geneva: Weerasekera’s Challenge in 2016

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.[1]  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.[2]

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Addressing Shenali Waduge and the One-Eyed UNHRC Hunters, One

Michael Roberts

Shenali Waduge has a long history as a defender of Sinhala interests within and beyond the island of Sri Lanka. In quite a few minds she would be classified as a Sinhala chauvinist. One must, however, not throw the baby out with the dirty bathwater.[1] Her essays should not be dismissed out of hand. Indeed, there were several striking claims in an essay she presented recently in two outlets[2] for me to include it within Thuppahi under this imposed heading: “To Your Face: UN and UNHRC challenged by Shenali Waduge.”

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