US University calls for Sri Lanka war crimes investigations

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 September 2010, 02:10 GMT]
The Human Rights law clinic at the Washington D.C.-based American University, in a report released to the media Friday, proposed that the United Nations should establish a War Crimes Tribunal for Sri Lanka. "The Tamil community's need for truth, justice, and redress will continue to be marginalized without outside intervention. Marginalization and impunity for human rights violations may once again lead to unrest in the country and will impede justice and accountability," the report said.

Noting that "[t]here is indisputable evidence that Sri Lankan security forces are responsible for war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide against ethnic Tamil civilian population," the report said, "rather than fostering justice and accountability after the civil war, the Sri Lankan Government has continuously impeded efforts to hold human rights violators accountable.

"As for its specious efforts, the Sri Lanka Government has demonstrated an interest inly in prosecuting members of the LTTE, while failing to express any interest in holding its own security forces responsible for willful and targetted killing of tens of thousands of Tamil civilians," the report added.

The Sri Lankan Government's Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) does not provide any of the requisite safeguards to ensure a fair tribunal resulting in a system that heavily favors the Sri Lankan military officials while marginalizing the rights of the Tamil population, the report added.

On the UN's advisory panel, the report said: "early reports suggest that the UN panel has been forced to operate from a compromised position, far removed from the locus of their study making harder for the truth to be unearthed," pointing out also that Colombo has "prevented the panel from carrying out its duties."

 

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