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Sri Lanka claims victory ahead of crucial UN human rights vote

CNN-IBN
Mar 17, 2013 at 08:53am IST

New Delhi: Sri Lanka has described the adoption of its periodic review of human rights at Geneva's UNHRC sessions without a division as a victory and an acknowledgment of its rights progress.

"We can be happy that our report was unanimously accepted at the Universal Periodic Review (UPR). This was despite many powerful countries speaking against it," Mahinda Samarasinghe, a minister and President Mahinda Rajapaksa's Human Rights envoy, said.

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Samarasinghe said that anyone taking an impartial view would note Sri Lanka's human rights progress made since the end to the conflict with the LTTE four years ago.

Meanwhile, India has urgent Sri Lanka for a probe into the alleged atrocities against the Lankan Tamils. External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid said that India feel there should be a transparent probe; if the people in Sri Lanka have been hurt due to wrongful investigations then transparent action should be initiated against the responsible people.

"We are not politicising the matter, we want the Sri Lankan government to help Tamils recover from their wounds. We feel there should be a transparent probe; if the people there have been hurt due to wrongful investigations then transparent action should be initiated against the responsible people," Khurshid said. The review came ahead of next week's crucial resolution to be moved by the US.

The US adopted a similar resolution in 2012 with India's support which bound Sri Lanka to make rapid progress on reconciliation with the Tamils. In a statement, the US Geneva mission regretted that Sri Lanka had rejected all UPR recommendations of member states that called upon Colombo to implement recommendations of its own reconciliation body, the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).

In a critical tone, the US said Sri Lanka was trying to reframe human rights commitments in line with their National Plan of Action, which "does not address the broad spectrum of recommendations put forward by the LLRC report".

With Additional Inputs From PTI

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