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UK concerned by Sri Lankan militarisation and harassment of civil society

UK Minister for Asia at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Nigel Adams, expressed concerns the government had over Sri Lanka’s continued “harassment of civil society” and “militarisation of civilian functions”.

These comments were in response to a question posed by Shadow Minister for Schools, Wes Streeting, who stated:

“Given that the Rajapaksa Government in Sri Lanka have effectively withdrawn from the commitments that the country made at the UN Human Rights Council, can we count on the Foreign Secretary to show the leadership we need to secure a new UN resolution, and ensure the prosecution of historical war crimes and accountability for previous human rights abuses, as well as an effective challenge to the present Government for ongoing human rights abuses?”

Adams stated in response:

“The hon. Gentleman is right to raise that issue and I applaud his work with the all-party group for Tamils, alongside that of other colleagues. We will work closely with our international partners and the Human Rights Council on how best to take forward this important issue. The Minister responsible for Sri Lanka, Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, raised a number of those concerns, including the harassment of civil society and the militarisation of civilian functions, when he spoke with the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister on 5 November. We have been clear in our support for the UNHRC framework, both in our discussions with the Government of Sri Lanka and with the UNHRC in February, June and September”.

Concern was also expressed by Elliot Colburn, MP for Carshalton and Wallington; Sam Tarry, MP for Ilford South; Steven Baker, MP for Wycombe; 

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