Human Rights Commission in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 October 1997, 23:59 GMT]
The National Human Rights Commission is making its first visit to Jaffna today. The commission's delegation is led by Mr.T Sunderalingam ,a retired Sri Lankan high court judge. Sarvodaya movement leader Dr. Ariyaratne is also in the group.

The team is expected to meet with teachers in the University of Jaffna, school principals, the Bishop of Jaffna, the GA and the parents of arrested and missing persons.

The National Human Rights Commission was set up by the Chandrika regime in March this year under pressure from the international human rights community.

When the commissioners were named, strong doubts were expressed in many quarters whether they (the commissioners) would have sufficient will to carry out their duties effectively.

The human rights community has been highly sceptical about the real powers conferred by the PA regime on the Commission. The Commission has done absolutely nothing about the human rights situation in the northeast since it was constituted.

Today's mission has come in the wake of the satyagraha campaign launched by the parents and relatives of the persons who went missing in Jaffna after the Sri Lankan armed forces moved in.

A human rights activist in Batticaloa called the commission's visit "an ad hoc eyewash measure by the PA regime to show the western embassies in Colombo that it is doing something about the protests in Jaffna."


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