The Sunday Leader

Extension Not Due To UN Report, Says LLRC

  • War Commission Wants Six Months More

By Maryam Azwer

The Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission’s (LLRC) request for an extension of its deadline had nothing to do with the release of the UN advisory panel report, said LLRC Spokesperson, Lakshman Wickremasinghe, last week.
“The Commission has not been able to study and analyze the large amounts of submissions,” said Wickremasinghe, citing this as the LLRC’s primary reason for requesting a second extension of its term.
He added that this issue had been evident even before the release of the UN report.
The LLRC, appointed by President Rajapaksa in May last year, was initially expected to conclude its hearings by November 2010, but was granted a 6 month extension. Wickremasinghe said on Friday (6) that the Commission now sought an extension of 6 more months in order to produce “a better quality report” after making certain necessary clarifications.
He said that the LLRC should be able to conclude its work in 4 months, but had asked for an additional 2 months as a precautionary measure. “The Chairman (of the LLRC) sent a letter to the President’s office two days ago requesting an extension,” he explained.
He went on to say that some evidence needed clarification and  the LLRC may have to meet again with some individuals or groups for this purpose. “We don’t foresee any public sittings, but the Commission may meet with people to clarify what they said, if necessary. Also, when we analyze certain specialized areas the panel needs expert opinions, such as in the case of the Channel 4 video,” said Wickremasinghe. “There is a large amount of evidence. We have gone through roughly half of it, but it is taking much longer than expected,” he said.
Commenting on the LLRC’s take on the UN report, he said, “Now that it is in the public domain the Commission will keep it in mind. We will be informed by the content but it has nothing to do with the extension.”
The Commission, chaired by former Attorney General C. R. de Silva, began public hearings in August 2010. It went on to receive oral and written submissions from individuals as well as organizations from various regions in the country, amidst skepticism from both local and international quarters.

1 Comment for “Extension Not Due To UN Report, Says LLRC”

  1. raj

    many people would believe it other way around.

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