The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has been urged to ensure the September report on Sri Lanka reveals the full force and mandate of the resolution adopted at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva last year.
In March 2014, the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) adopted resolution 25/1 entitled “Promoting Reconciliation, Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka.”
The Canadian Tamil Congress noted that the resolution requested the office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, “to undertake a comprehensive investigation into alleged serious violations and abuses of Human Rights and related crimes by both parties in Sri Lanka.” As the HRC sits June 15, 2015 for its 29th regular session, Tamils from Sri Lanka and around the world are hopeful that this session will be used to strengthen the report.
Though the report was due to be released in March 2015 at the 28th session, In February 2015, OHCHR Chief Zeid Ra’ad Al-Hussein, recommended the deferral of the report until the September session.
While acknowledging it was a difficult decision to defer the report “one time only”, the High Commissioner stressed the possibility that new information may emerge which would strengthen the report.
“We understand that since then, new information has been provided by various parties. Stating also that he has received a clear commitment from the newly elected Sri Lankan government to cooperate with the office on a whole range of Human Rights issues – which the previous government absolutely refused to do – the High Commissioner was keen on engaging with the new government to ensure those commitments translate into actions,” the Canadian Tamil Congress said.
While there has been doubt cast by a few as to whether the report will be postponed, the Canadian Tamil Congress feels that the Commissioner will stay true to his word and release report come September. In that same vein, the Canadian Tamil Congress strongly request the OHCHR to do its utmost to ensure the September report reveals the full force and mandate of the 2014 resolution. (Colombo Gazette)