Ravinatha to head delegation

The government has decided to send a low level delegation for the 24th session of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) which begins this week in Geneva.
External Affairs Ministry Secretary Karunatillake said that a four member delegation from Sri Lanka will be sent for the session.
“A high level delegation will not be sent for this session. There is no need for that. In March next year we will send a high level delegation,” Amunugama said.
He said that Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Geneva Ravinatha Aryasinghe will lead the delegation and speak on behalf of Sri Lanka.
Meanwhile President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Special Envoy on Human Rights, Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe is hoping to meet the President and propose that he be sent for the session.
He is of the opinion that if he is sent he will get more time to speak at the session as opposed to the time given for an Ambassador.
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay will be making an oral statement on Sri Lanka to the Council on September 25 on the implementation of resolution 22/1 on promoting reconciliation and accountability in Sri Lanka. Pillay will submit a full report on Sri Lanka in March next year.
Pillay will be commenting on her recent visit to Sri Lanka where at a concluding press conference she had made some critical remarks on what she heard and saw during her visit.
At the press conference Pillay had said that several people she had met during her visit had been threatened or intimidated.
She had said that she will brief the UN Human Rights Council about those threats.
Report by Indika Sri Aravinda