Missing persons commission to submit details to new office

Justice Maxwell ParanagamaThe Presidential commission on missing persons which has completed its mandate, will submit all details it has on missing persons to the new office on missing persons once it is established.

Chairman of the commission, retired High Court judge Maxwell Paranagama told the Colombo Gazette that the commission will submit its final report to President Maithripala Sirisena next month.

He said that since the term of the commission already ended last month it will not hold more public sittings.

Paranagama said that all available details with the commission will be handed over to the proposed office on missing persons, which has already obtained cabinet approval.

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa established the commission based on a recommendation made by the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).

The scope and nature of the mandate given to the commission was to identify persons responsible for abductions and hundreds of disappearances said to have taken place during the war and to institute legal proceedings against such persons.

The commission held several public sittings, mostly in the North and East and submitted preliminary reports to the President.

However civil society and international human rights groups had raised concerns over the commission and its work and called for it to be replaced with an office on missing persons. (Colombo Gazette)