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Harsha to lead Sri Lankan delegation for UPR review in Geneva

Deputy Minister of National Policies and Economic Affairs Dr Harsha de Silva is to lead Sri Lanka’s delegation to the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Sri Lanka in Geneva this week.

The delegation will comprise of officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Attorney-General’s Department, the President’s Office, and the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the UN in Geneva.

Sri Lanka’s Report under the Universal Periodic Review comes up for consideration on Wednesday in Geneva.

The UPR was established by the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) in 2006, as a process through which the human rights record of every UN Member State is peer-reviewed.

The review, conducted through the UN Human Rights Council (HRC), is based upon each country’s human rights obligations and commitments in the UN Charter, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, human rights instruments to which the country is party, and other sources. During the process, the country under review submits a written report on its human rights record, and appears before the Council, where it receives recommendations regarding its human rights record from other UN Member States. The country under review is able to ‘accept’ or ‘note’ these recommendations. Those accepted form the basis for future reporting.

The UPR is the only process through which all UN Member States undergo review and scrutiny of their human rights records. Sri Lanka underwent its first UPR cycle in 2008 and the second in 2012. The review that will be conducted on 15 November will be Sri Lanka’s third.

The National Report of Sri Lanka covers areas that were part of the recommendations accepted by Sri Lanka following the 2nd UPR in 2012. The National Report was drafted, following wide consultations with all stakeholders including public consultations in Colombo, Kandy, Galle, Jaffna, and Kalmunai, online consultations and consultations by post.

The Foreign Ministry said that Sri Lanka will continue to engage constructively with the UN Human Rights Council and all member states of the UN to promote and protect human rights locally and internationally. (Colombo Gazette)

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