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Sri Lanka firm that it can seek accountability on its own, says External Affairs minister

Speaking at the High Level Segment of the opening sessions of the 28th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, Sri Lanka’s minister of External Affairs said that Sri Lanka should be allowed to work towards accountability and justice on its own.

Addressing the UNHRC high level segment on ‘Strengthening of international Cooperation in the field of Human Rights’ Mangala Samaraweera said,

“We are firm in our belief, that , to be successful, the journey of reconciliation and accountability is one that the people of our country must embark upon, on their own.”

Deeming "the end of terrorism in May 2009," a necessity, Samaraweera said the new government recognised the importance of this opportunity to work on achieving reconciliation.

Recalling a recent visit of a South African delegation to share experiences in Sri Lanka and noting a meeting  he had with the High Commissioner for Human Rights last month,  Samaraweera added that the Sri Lankan government was ready to “engage and work in cooperation with a range of international organisations and countries across the world.”

Expressing Sri Lanka's intention to work the UN treaty body system, Samaraweera later added that, the Special Rapporteur on Truth, Justice and Reparations and Guarantees of Non-Recurrence had been invited to visit, and that the government looked forward to receiving the Working Group on Involuntary and Enforced Disappearances.

Outlining the new government's intention to engage with the international community Samaraweera said,

"The government will engage and work in cooperation with a range of international organisations and countries across the world."

See full statement here.

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