US to `observe` probe by Lanka commission into `war crimes`
Washington: The United States on Friday said it
will "observe" functioning of the reconciliation commission
set up by the Sri Lankan government, hoping that it will have
broad mandate to pursue allegations of wartime atrocities.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who held talks with
visiting Sri Lankan Foreign Minister G L Peiris, also said
Washington fully supports ethnic and political reconciliation
efforts of the Island nation.
"We are very supportive of the approach taken by the Sri
Lankans. We will continue to work with them and observe this
commission. We expect it would be given a broad enough mandate
with the resources necessary to be able to follow the trail of
any evidence that is presented," Clinton said.
Lanka recently set up the commission to probe allegations
of human rights violations during the last phase of the civil
war but did not allow any independent body to investigate the
charges despite pressure from global community.
"It is important that the Commission members be and are
perceived as being independent, impartial and competent. We
expect that the mandate would enable them to fully investigate
serious allegations of violations, that they make public their
recommendations..," she said, adding the issue of internally
displaced people was also discussed.
Pleased that the Sri Lankan Government is committed to
re-establish democracy in the country after the end of nearly
three decades of civil war that ended with the defeat of LTTE
last year, Clinton said: "Sri Lanka would remain a strong and
united country by drawing on the strength of all of its
citizens, valuing the diversity of its people and ensuring
Peiris said one of the challenges in Sri Lanka is to
revive the institutions of democracy, now that the country is
returning to normal.
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