|Sri Lanka looks forward to fruitful cooperation with new UN High Commissioner for Human Rights|
|Tuesday, 09 September 2008|
Statement made by Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha, Secretary - General of the Sri Lankan Peace Secretariat, in welcoming the new High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Navanethem Pillai
Mr. President, Sri Lanka is pleased to welcome the new High Commissioner for Human Rights, and to wish her well for her work, and her thoughtful and productive programme laid out in her presentation yesterday. We look forward to fruitful cooperation with her, in particular on the follow up to the Durban Conference.
Racism continues a corrosive influence on people in many of our societies, and we hope that under your guidance, Mr. President, and with the sympathetic experience and determination the High Commissioner brings to her tasks, the Council and the Office of the High Commissioner will be able to alleviate at least some of the suffering. Sri Lanka will support your efforts as best possible, at home and also through the indefatigable efforts of our Permanent Representative in Geneva.
At the same time, Mr. President, Sri Lanka has recognized the need for improvement in our own Human Rights situation at home, and looks forward to assistance from the High Commissioner to take positive action. It has been difficult in the context of the struggle against terrorism, as so many countries have realized, to maintain the high standards all of us here would like to set ourselves.
But, while we have a much better record than most about caring for civilians during operations, as importantly we have managed to continue with social support systems even to our citizens who were under the temporary domination of terrorist forces.
I believe nowhere else in the world are free health and educational services provided in such situations, so it was particularly heartening that, when there is much concentration on other aspects, the High Commissioner made specific mention of the ‘benefits of housing, health care, education and opportunity’, benefits that we have striven to extend to all our citizens.
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights - Ms. Navanethem Pillai
But as we have discussed, when the High Commissioner met our Minister for Disaster Management and Human Rights last week, there have been flaws arising from serious security concerns, and we realize that these must be eliminated so that all our people can move forward together.
Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha,
Secretary General, Secretariat for Coordinating the Peace Process
We were pleased that she was positive about the assistance we have long requested. We look forward to follow up on recent visits of Special Representatives who have provided invaluable advice, and we trust that under your aegis, Madam, we will receive the practical assistance that will make such special procedures helpful to our people.
|Last Updated ( Monday, 09 March 2009 )|
|< Prev||Next >|