Washington: As Sri Lanka observed the
first anniversary of the end of the civil war, a US lawmaker on Thursday demanded investigations into the alleged war crimes in
the last phase of the war there.
"May 19 commemorates the one-year anniversary of the
end of the war and the remembrance of the many lives lost
during the civil war in Sri Lanka. I call on the international
community to pursue independent investigations into the
alleged war crimes that occurred," said Congressman Danny K
"The US would not be alone in calling for these
investigations. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and
the European Union have already called for independent
investigations," he said.
Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other
NGOs have called for similar investigations of war crimes,
crimes against humanity and human rights violations, he said
in his remarks in the US House of Representatives.
The alleged crimes, Davis said, include, extrajudicial
abuse and detention of unarmed civilians and former combatant,
use of child soldiers, harm to civilians and civilian objects,
the killing of captives or combatants seeking to surrender,
individual disappearances and inhumane conditions.
"All parties complicit in violating human rights must
be held accountable.
Only then can the Sri Lankan people really move
forward in trying to achieve peace and stability on the
island," Congressman Davis said.
Speaking on the occasion, Congressman Brad Miller from
North Carolina said expressed his concern about the status of
the Tamil community in the country.
"The viability of a traditionally Tamil region in Sri
Lanka is under threat," he said.
"Since the beginning of the war, one third of the
Tamil population was driven off the island and many more were
displaced. A large area in the north central part of the
island that was a predominantly Tamil area is now almost
devoid of Tamils," he said.