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UNHRC resolution against SL passed

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India, Japan, Nepal, UAE, Qatar, Libya and Indonesia abstain

The resolution at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) titled ‘Promoting reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka’ (A/HR/51/5/L1/Rev1) was adopted yesterday.

The resolution was proposed by a group of states comprising Canada, Germany, Malawi, Montenegro, North Macedonia, the United States and the United Kingdom.20 UNHRC member states including the United Kingdom, United States, France, Finland, Germany, Mexico, the Netherlands, Poland and the Republic of Korea voted for the resolution.

Seven members, China, Bolivia, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Cuba and Eritrea, voted against the resolution.Meanwhile, India, Japan, Nepal, UAE, Qatar, Libya and Indonesia abstained from voting.UK’s Ambassador Simon Manley introduced the resolution on Sri Lanka.

“The text is largely based on last year’s resolution but has been updated to reflect some of the key developments over the last 18 months in what has been a rather dramatic time for Sri Lanka – an economic crisis, mass protests, and a change in government, all of which have had a significant bearing on the human rights situation in the country,” he said.

He adDed that the draft both recognises the challenges which Sri Lanka had faced during this period and acknowledges progress where thAT has occurred.

“It reflects some of the more recent concerns outlined in the High Commissioner’s report, especially the human rights impact of the economic crisis. And it also addresses several longstanding issues which still need to be addressed.  These include the lack of accountability for past violations, the many unresolved cases of enforced disappearances, the need for Sri Lanka to meet its own commitments on the devolution of political authority, as well as the need to uphold the rights of all people in Sri Lanka including Tamils and Muslims,” he said.

Earlier, Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Ali Sabry said that the resolution had been presented without the country’s consent or consultation. He said this draft resolution is not helpful to Sri Lanka.The resolution urges the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to enhance its monitoring and reporting on the situation of human rights in Sri Lanka, including on progress in reconciliation and accountability and on the human rights impact of the economic crisis and corruption.



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Embassy officer arrested at BIA remanded

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The Embassy official who was attached to the Sri Lanka Embassy in Oman who is accused of being involved in a human trafficking racket was arrested by officers of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and remanded till the 13th of December when he was produced before the Colombo Chief Magistrate

The official was arrested on his arrival at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) this morning (29 November).

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Easter Sunday terror attack suspect hacked to death

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By Norman Palihawadane

A 38-year-old Easter Sunday terror attack suspect was hacked to death yesterday morning (28) in Mattakkuliya.

The victim, Mohamed Badurdeen Mohamed Harnas, was a resident of Safiya Avenue, Mattakkuliya, police said.

A suspect in the Easter Sunday terror attacks, he had been released on bail.

The suspect was rushed to the National Hospital, Colombo, after three individuals, who arrived in a car around 10. 00 am, attacked him.

Two persons attacked the man while the other was keeping the car engine running, according to eyewitnesses. The attackers thereafter fled in the same car.

Harnas was pronounced dead on admission to hospital.

Further investigations in this regard are currently underway.

The victims family members said that Harnas had been taken into custody, following the 2019 Easter Sunday attacks, but later released as there was no evidence of his involvement in terrorist activities.

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Rail service between Mahawa and Jaffna to be suspended for five months

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Transport Minister Bandula Gunawardena told Parliament yesterday that the railway services between Mahawa and Jaffna will be suspended for a period of five months in 2023.

The Minister said that operations will be suspended from January 15, 2023.

The Minister said it was to repair work on the railway line.

He said so in response to a question raised by Vanni District MP Selvam Adaikalanathan.

“We are focusing our attention on the request made by you. We have to halt railway operations between Mahawa and Jaffna for five months from January 2023. Train services have been continuously operating to Jaffna, but now we have faced a situation as we have not been able to carry out any repair work thus far,” the Minister said.

Assuring that this issue can be rectified in five months, Minister Gunawardane said that, thereafter, a good railway service can be provided for this route.

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