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Sri Lanka to scrap presidential commission on missing persons

The Sri Lankan government announced that it will scrap a long running presidential commission on missing persons and replace it with another commission.

Sri Lanka’s Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, who is also minister for the Buddha Sasana, announced the abolition of the commission but said “we will not abandon its procedure”. Admitting that “even locally, most of the people are not happy with the Commission and they have no faith in its process” he added the government “will go ahead with a commission which will be more effective.”

So far two interim reports have been submitted from the commission to the government, but have yet to be released publically.

The chair of the commission, Justice Maxwell Paranagama, rejected criticism of the mechanism, stating that no one could do the job better. He had earlier spoken out against the UN Panel of Experts' estimated death toll of 40,000 Tamil civilians at the end of the armed conflict in 2009.

Mr Rajapakshe also said the Sri Lankan government is also “considering” the repeal of the Prevention of the Terrorism Act (PTA).

See our earlier posts: 

Sri Lanka's domestic commission to hold new sittings in Trinco (19 Feb 2015)

Sri Lanka's domestic 'missing persons' commission delays conclusion (08 Feb 2015)

Our children were killed by the Army - Tamil mothers testify (15 Dec 2014)

Presidential Commission chair dismisses CPA criticism (05 October 2014)

Presidential Commission of Inquiry into Disappearances lacks credibility - CPA (02 Oct 2014)

'Deceptive' Presidential Commission on Missing Persons an attempt to mislead people – TNA (17 August 2014)

Chair of govt commission accuses NGOs of inflating disappearance numbers (12 August 2014)

Bishop of Mannar refuses to participate in Sri Lanka's domestic inquiry on missing persons (10 August 2014)

Cross-party concern over 'betrayal' of Sri Lankan soldiers in Presidential Inquiry (28 July 2014)

TNA remains sceptical over government commission (27 July 2014)

CPA criticises expansion of presidential commission mandate (25 July 2014)

UNP expresses ‘serious concern’ over government u-turn on presidential commission
(22 July 2014)

Over 18,000 cases submitted for disappearances commission (06 June 2014)

Desperate search for disappeared continues (16 February 2014)

‘Government commission is a fake’ NPC Deputy Chairman tells Japan (12 Feb 2014)

Disappearance investigation commission a farce - Ananthy Sasitharan (02 January 2014)

TNA rejects presidential commission to probe disappearances (29 July 2013)

Rajapaksa appoints disappearance commission (14 August 2013)

Another commission... (26 July 2013)

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