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Last updated: 12 February, 2010 - Published 18:08 GMT
 
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War crimes probe call reiterated
 
Navi Pillai
UN expresses hope that President Rajapaksa will respect his pledges
The United Nations have once again called for an independent international investigation over alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka.

Navi Pillai, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights has told a gathering in Dublin, Ireland that her office is in a clear understanding that national investigations "have not worked so far".

Speaking in Dublin, Ireland, she added that UN Secretary General Ban ki-Moon is "seriously committed to getting President Rajapaksa to comply with the undertaking he gave to the Secretary General."

The High Commissioner confirmed that she recently met Human Rights Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe in Geneva.

HR minister

"It seems that everybody was waiting for the election to be over, and so that is what I reminded him," she said.

Minister Samarasinghe (r) in Geneva (file photo
UN says the minister should work on probing all rights violations

"The position that Sri Lanka has the unique office of a ministry for HR I thought places a particular responsibility on the minister of HR should talk to his own government not only on post conflict rights violations but post election rights violations."

Expressing "disappointment" that the issue of alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka was not properly addressed at the UN HRC, she said it is an important vehicle on which states can take measures on rights violations of another country.

Denying war crimes allegations, the Sri Lanka government says it will not allow any international investigations.

In an interview with the BBC, Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa said he would nto allow any such investigation as “there is no reason.”

But the former military chief Gen Sarath Fonseka has said he will testify at an international hearing.

 
 
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