UNHRC officials to visit Sri Lanka in January; UN assistant secretary-general meets Rajapaksa

Officials from the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) will visit Sri Lanka in January next year, Foreign Minister G.L Peiris informed parliament

Nov 26, 2021
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UN assistant secretary-general meets Rajapaksa

Officials from the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) will visit Sri Lanka in January next year, Foreign Minister G.L Peiris informed parliament. The island nation has increasingly come under the radar of the UN rights body, which accused the government of reversing the progress made on reconciliation and transitional justice. 

On Thursday, Peiris said two UN officials, who are scheduled to visit next year, would be allowed to visit any part of the country. They will also meet civil society members in the country. 

Furthermore, the government has also invited civil society members on Saturday for discussion and cooperation on key issues. Sri Lanka will continue to work with the UN system, including the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).

On Thursday, UN Assistant-Secretary-General (ASG) Khaled Khiari, who is on a tour of Sri Lanka, met President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in Colombo. He briefed Khiari about positive initiatives taken by the government to establish peace and harmony among different communities in the country. 

Earlier this year, after a damning report on the country’s downslide in rights situation, the UNHRC adopted a resolution against Sri Lanka, calling for enhanced monitoring of the human rights situation in the country. The resolution also mandated the OHCHR to collect, document, and preserve the evidence of rights violations for future accountability. It also called for independent reporting by human rights activists. 

(SAM)

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