NAM concerned over Ban`s move to set up advisory body on Lanka

Last Updated: Friday, March 12, 2010 - 18:11

Colombo: Condemning "selective targeting" of
countries, the Non-Aligned Movement has voiced concern over UN
chief Ban Ki-Moon`s move to appoint a panel of experts to
advise him on accountability issues pertaining to alleged
human rights violations in Sri Lanka during the LTTE war.

In a letter to the UN Secretary General, the New York-
based Chair of the Coordinating Bureau of the Non-Aligned
Movement (NAM) said the proposed appointment comes without
taking into consideration the domestic situation in the island
nation and without consulting the government of Sri Lanka.
It said President Mahinda Rajapaksa had already expressed
in public his intention to appoint a domestic mechanism to
address accountability issues relating to the LTTE war
voluntarily and that the UN has no mandate to intervene in
domestic matters of a State.

The NAM Coordinating Bureau said it strongly condemns
"selective targeting" of individual countries which it deems
contrary to the founding principles of the Movement and the
United Nations Charter.

It said the move by the UN chief on the eve of the April
8 Parliamentary polls in Sri Lanka could do "more harm than
good to the country`s ongoing and relentless efforts aimed at
reinforcing reconciliation and national unity."

In the letter dated March 9, the NAM said the UN
Secretary General`s proposal comes as a reaction to the
proposals by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human
Rights.

It said those proposals were based on information that
does not take into account the particularities of the domestic
situations, and without consultations with the government
concerned.
"Neither the (UN) Security Council, nor the General
Assembly or its subsidiary, Human Rights Council, has made
pronouncements on alleged human rights violations, nor
mandated any particular course of action," the NAM letter
said.

It pointed out to Ban that the situation in Sri Lanka is
not on the agenda of any of these bodies and there is nothing
in the Charter of the UN that authorises intervention in
matters which are essentially in the domestic jurisdiction of
any State without prejudice of course to the application of
enforcement measures under Chapter VII.

"Based on national ownership and leadership, the non-
aligned countries therefore wish to underscore the need to
allow enough space and time to the government of Sri Lanka to
complete its own domestic processes, without interference or
unsolicited assistance," said the letter signed by Maged A
Abdelaziz, the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the
Chair.

PTI



First Published: Friday, March 12, 2010 - 18:11

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