05/28/2009, 00.00
SRI LANKA

UN gives full backing to President Rajapaksa

Melani Manel Perera
The United Nations Human Rights Council has approved a resolution in favour of the government of Sri Lanka: army is no longer accused of war crimes; the conflict was an “internal question that did not justify external interference”. Access to refugee camps for Humanitarian Organisations will take place as Colombo government “sees fit”.

Colombo (AsiaNews) - Sri Lanka has defeated the UN.  With 29 votes in favour, 12 against and 6 abstentions, the Colombo government has won the approval of the Human Rights Council  (Unhcr) for President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s strategy.

The resolution passed on May 27th in Geneva establishes that the Tamil Tigers used civilians as human shields, relieves that army of war crimes charges and states that the conflict and emergency are “internal questions that do not justify external interference”.  Thus Colombo’s strategy in managing the crisis of 280 thousand refugees has passed the test.  Access the camps for Humanitarian Organisations will take place as the government “sees fit”.

Mahinda Samarasinghe, Disaster Management and Human Rights Minister described the Geneva vote as a “decisive victory at this crucial time”, that “shows the endorsement of the international community of Sri Lanka’s efforts to resolve the humanitarian challenges in the aftermath of the conflict”.

In favour of the resolution that approves President Rajapaksa’s strategy, were China, Russia, India, Indonesia and other Asian countries and African bloc nations. Against Sri Lanka’s line of non-interference; the EU, Mexico, Japan and Chile.

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