Leaked excerpts of UN report on Sri Lanka accurate: Official

Last Updated: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 - 10:39

United Nations: The leaked excerpts of a UN
report, which accuses the Sri Lankan government of committing
war crimes in its final decisive offensive against Tamil
Tigers in 2009 are accurate but incomplete, an official has
said.

"The published parts of the leaked report are accurate
renditions of the relevant parts of the report. They are
certainly not the full report," Farhan Haq, UN deputy
spokesperson, told reporters here yesterday.

The independent panel of experts, which wrote the report,
was formed to advise UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on
accountability issues arising from alleged human rights
violations committed during the Sri Lankan government`s last
push to crush the LTTE rebels in May 2009.

The panel`s report, which is being reviewed by the UN,
will be officially released this week.

The excerpts leaked to Sri Lanka`s `Island` newspaper,
said that "the panel found credible allegations, which if
proven, indicate that a wide range of serious violations of
international humanitarian law and international human rights
law were committed both by the Government of Sri Lanka and the
LTTE, some of which would amount to war crimes and crimes
against humanity."

The Sri Lankan government has rejected the report as
"fundamentally flawed and patently biased."

Haq said that he did not know who leaked the report.

"It did leak to a Sri Lankan newspaper and it did leak
shortly after we gave the report to the government of Sri
Lanka but I do not know definitively who it was who turned
this over," he said.

Following a call by President Mahinda Rajapakse for a
"show of strength" against the report, the UN said Sri Lankan
authorities needed to ensure the safety of its staffers inside
the country.

"We have underscored that again and we want to make sure
that regardless of what their positions are on the report that
they abide by their obligations to the security of our staff,"
said Haq.

The UN has said it will publish the government`s response
along with the report.

Haq said that the UN hoped to publish the government`s
response along with the report but the document would be
released as soon as the UN finished its own review.

The spokesman added that the report had been made
available to the Sri Lankan government because it was the
customary practice to give copy to the concerned country and
Ban Ki-moon had stressed that Colombo had "pre-eminent
responsibility in this matter."

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 - 10:39

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