SL To Respond To Visit Request By Pillay
By Dinouk Colombage
The External Affairs Ministry is to respond this week to the request by United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, to send a delegation to the country.
External Affairs Ministry Secretary Karunatilaka Amunugama said that the ministry had not yet responded to the request made by the UN human rights chief.
He said that they were awaiting the return of Minister G.L. Peiris, who was overseas last week, to respond. “We have the request in our possession and will be responding to it this week,” he said.
The request made by Pillay’s office asked that Sri Lanka allow a UN delegation to visit the country in July and produce an assessment of the situation on the ground. The request was originally given to Sri Lanka on May 18.
Pillay first expressed interest in visiting Sri Lanka back in March this year, during the 19th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva.
Pillay had in March explained that she had received an invitation to visit Sri Lanka the previous month (February) but had not yet fixed a date.
She did add at that point that prior to her visit to Sri Lanka she would be sending a delegation from her office.