Resolution on Lanka at UNHRC in March? | Sunday Observer

Resolution on Lanka at UNHRC in March?

The proposed UK led procedural resolution on Sri Lanka is due to be tabled at the UN Human Rights Council early next month, diplomatic sources told the Sunday Observer.

However, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said they did not wish to make a formal comment on the resolution mooted by the Core-Group, until the official process to table it at the HRC is completed adding that there was always a possibility of a resolution not being pursued. Sri Lanka’s Core-Group consist of the UK, Canada, Germany, Macedonia and Montenegro.

Asked if the Core Group had consulted Sri Lanka on the resolution, the spokesperson said,” Not so far”. Once it is tabled, the stakeholders will make efforts to tweak the wording in the resolution to protect their own interests. The Sri Lankan Government will also participate in that process.

Michael Lord Naseby, who is a strong champion of Sri Lanka’s interest told the Sunday Observer, ‘It would be entirely wrong for the West to make new demands’. ‘Good progress has been made on almost all fronts,’ he said adding that the West should show some faith by removing any further assessments.

Lord Naseby is the Honorary President of the All Party British Sri Lanka Parliamentary Group.

A senior Sri Lankan diplomat who is well versed with the process said when a resolution is tabled at the HRC, the anti government groups will be the first to get copies of the draft. “Usually, the NGOs get the first copy of the resolution, even before the missions of the countries concerned,” he said.The NGOs or the civil society segment plays a major role in shaping country specific resolutions. The diplomat also said that Sri Lanka must seize the opportunity of Germany being one of the co-sponsors, to get the resolution deferred or temporarily withheld but added that the fact that Canada too is a member of the Core Group would make it a difficult task. Canada did not support Sri Lanka at the Human Rights Council.

The UK which is leading the resolution on Sri Lanka told the Organisational Meeting of the 40th HRC session on Monday (Feb 11) of their plans to submit a ‘procedural’ resolution on Sri Lanka.