|Sri Lanka briefs Asian ambassadors in Geneva|
|Monday, 02 March 2009|
Before the official opening of the 10th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, the Sri Lankan delegation led by Hon. Mahinda Samarasinghe, Minister of Disaster Management and Human Rights, attended a working breakfast hosted by Permanent Representative Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka for representatives of a number of Asian missions. This provided an opportunity for elucidation of the current situation in Sri Lanka.
Statements were made by a number of countries, supporting totally the necessity to eradicate terrorism. There were also questions about plans for the post-conflict situation, with the Hon. Minister confirming the determination of the Sri Lankan government to pursue a political solution. Interest was expressed in other Tamil parties and it was explained that, though several of them had suffered losses because of LTTE elimination of their leaders, those who had survived had made clear their determination to participate in a democratic dispensation with terrorist threats removed.
From left to right: H.E. Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka, Hon. Minister Samarasinghe
and Attorney General Mr. Mohan Peiris at the Breakfast meeting
Prof. Wijesinha addressing the Ambassadors at the breakfast meeting
Left to right : H.E. Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka, Dr. Rohan Perera
and Hon. Minister Samarasinghe
Attention was drawn to the continuing commitment of the government to social services, and its anxiety to promote economic development. The enthusiastic participation of the private sector as well as the people of Jaffna in the recent Industrial and Technological Exhibition was highlighted, along with the declaration by His Excellency the President of 2009 as the Year of English and Information Technology, with Jaffna given the status of a City of Excellence with regard to these subjects.
The Attorney General, Mr. Mohan Pieris, whilst affirming the gratitude of the government for support against terrorism, noted the dangers of continuing funding for terrorist activity, and hoped that countries opposed to terrorism would take firm steps to stop the flow of funds that had enabled the LTTE to stockpile vast quantities of heavy weaponry.
One ambassador noted that the results of recent Provincial Council elections made clear that the current approach of the government was clearly endorsed by the people. Appreciation was expressed of the important role played by the Sri Lankan Mission in Geneva with regard to ensuring an international perspective with regard to Human Rights, and Sri Lanka was congratulated for having demonstrated its commitment to improving the Human Rights situation in the country, even while conducting a difficult campaign against terrorist activity.
Hon. Mahinda Samarasinghe was scheduled to address the Council later in the day, following the opening of the Council by its President, Mr. Martin Ihoeghian Uhomoibi, Permanent Representative of Nigeria, and the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Navanetham Pillai.
|Last Updated ( Monday, 02 March 2009 )|
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