Trinco citizens call for UNHRC presence

[TamilNet, Friday, 20 April 2001, 16:49 GMT]
“The presence of the Geneva based United Nations Human Rights Commission in Sri Lanka should be made a reality to monitor crimes against innocent Tamils, especially women, by members of Armed Forces who are almost 100 percent Sinhalese”, states a memorandum sent to several international human rights organizations Friday by leading citizens of Trincomalee.

One hundred citizens including lawyers, educationists, businessmen and important personalities attached to several non-governmental organizations in Trincomalee have signed the memorandum. The memorandum has been sent to several human rights organizations, including the UN Human Rights Commission, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch of USA, Asian Human Rights Commission, National Human Rights Commission in India and the National Human Rights of Sri Lanka by e-mail.

“In the recent past there had been many instances in Sri Lanka where innocent Tamil women had been subjected to rape, torture, inhuman cruel and degrading treatment by the members of the Armed Forces. Except in the Kirushanthy rape and murder cases in all others instances investigations have been very slow and no interest was taken to bring the real culprits before the Law. Whilst assurances are given by the Government, the acts by the members of the Armed Forces against unarmed Tamil civilians especially violence of State terrorism continue unabated", states the memorandum.

The memorandum pointed out," The two Tamil women Sivamany and Vijikala who were gang raped by service and police personnel last month at Mannar have told that what happened to them should not happen to any other women in the world".

Several suggestions that ought to be implemented to curb the violence against innocent Tamils in Sri Lanka are included in the Trincomalee memorandum.

The suggestions are given below:

1.Steps should be taken to ensure that whenever the members of the armed forces take a woman into custody, there should be female officers present among them. Female officers in the cases of women should make body searches.

2.As far as possible women should not be arrested from their places of residence in the night.

3.Medical examination of all detainees should be carried out every 24 hours by the District Medical Officer or by a medical officer nominated by him. Reports of medical officers should be forwarded to the local Magistrate and the National Human Rights Commission

4.The presence of the Geneva based United Nations Human Rights Commission in Sri Lanka be made a reality to monitor crimes against innocent Tamils.

5.The UN Rapporteur on violence against Women should be asked to submit a report on atrocities committed on innocent Tamil women in Sri Lanka by the members of the Armed Forces.

 

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