The United Nations has reiterated that the Northern Province must be involved in talks to establish a mechanism to investigate incidents related to the war.
Former Foreign Minister, Professor G.L Peiris had earlier questioned a statement made by the UN that the Northern Provincial Council must be included in the accountability process.
Stéphane Dujarric, the spokesperson for UN Secretary General Ban ki-moon however said that the UN believes that there should be genuine and inclusive consultations on a national basis, including the Northern Province, to help arrive at the right model in the Sri Lankan context.
In a statement yesterday in New York, Dujarric said that he had been asked to clarify an earlier statement he made on Sri Lanka and on the accountability process.
Dujarric said the UN supports the Government and the people of Sri Lanka in their efforts to advance reconciliation and accountability.
“At the request of the Government of Sri Lanka, the UN is exploring the provision of a broad package of technical and financial assistance in consultation with all key stakeholders. The framework of UN support for peacebuilding in Sri Lanka was presented in Sri Lanka last June by the Resident Coordinator. What is being discussed for support by the Peacebuilding Fund are initiatives to advance the process of reconciliation in Sri Lanka through the resettlement of internally displaced persons, national reconciliation, and the development of credible transitional justice mechanisms in line with international standards. UN support is always built on the basis of inclusive, transparent and participatory consultations with all key stakeholders. $1 million has already been disbursed to support resettlement and integration initiatives for the remaining internally displaced persons in the north and east on seized land that has been returned by the Government. For the rest, the UN continues to consult with the Government of Sri Lanka, and all key stakeholders, to finalize the details of UN support,” he said.
Dujarric said the principle of inclusive, participatory and consultative processes will apply to UN support for the establishment of credible accountability and reconciliation mechanisms that meet international standards.
He said the UN believes that there should be genuine and inclusive consultations on a national basis, including the Northern Province, to help arrive at the right model in the Sri Lankan context. (Colombo Gazette)