The Sunday Leader

Lanka rejects 98 recommendations at UPR

 

Sri Lanka has rejected 98 recommendations submitted by countries at the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in Geneva, the troika tasked with serving as rapporteurs for Sri Lanka’s UPR said in its draft report.

Benin, India and Spain submitted its draft report on Sri Lanka at the UPR today. Presenting the report on Sri Lanka, the Ambassador of Spain to the UN in Geneva said that 210 recommendations were made to Sri Lanka.

The troika initially said that Sri Lanka had rejected 100 recommendations and accepted 120 but the draft report was later amended and the final figure saw Sri Lanka reject 98 recommendations and accept 111.

The Ambassador said that Sri Lanka had explained why the several recommendations were rejected.

Meanwhile Cuba, China and Russia raised concerns over what they said were attempts to use the UPR process to create a rift in the council and target a particular country.

After the draft report was adopted Sri Lanka’s special envoy for human rights, Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe, said that Sri Lanka will send a set of voluntary pledges to the UN Human Rights Secretariat within two weeks.

He also said that the government will keep the Secretariat updated on the progress of the post war developments in Sri Lanka.

Report by Easwaran Rutnam

 

The recommendations below did not enjoy the support of Sri Lanka:

129.1            Examine the possibility of ratifying OP-CAT and the Rome Statute (Tunisia);

129.2            Accede to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and draft a law on cooperation between the State and the Court (Uruguay);

129.3            Accede to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (Costa Rica, Ecuador);

129.4            Ratify the Rome Statue of the International Criminal Court and fully align its legislation with all the obligations under the Rome Statute, including incorporating the Rome Statute definition of crimes and general principles, as well as adopting provisions enabling cooperation with the Court (Latvia);

129.5            Accede to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, including accession to its Agreement on Privileges and Immunities (Slovakia);

129.6            Ratify the Rome Statute of the ICC as well as OP-CAT and establish a National Torture Prevention Mechanism (Austria);

129.7            Ratify the OP-CAT (Brazil);

129.8            Ratify at the earliest the OP-CAT (Maldives);

129.9            Accede to the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (Czech Republic);

129.10          Ratify the Second Optional Protocol to ICCPR (Turkey);

129.11          Continue its efforts to ratify the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (Argentina);

129.12          Ratify the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (Belgium, Iraq)

129.13          Accede to the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (France);

129.14          Ratify the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance; the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Statute of the International Criminal Court (Spain);

129.15          Sign the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (Sweden);

129.16          Fully incorporate the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women into its domestic system (Slovenia);[i]

129.17          Accept Articles 76 and 77 of the ICRMW (Philippines);

129.18          Consider ratifying ILO Convention 189 (Philippines);

129.19          Consider the possibility of abolishing the death penalty from its legal framework (Argentina);

129.20          Consider the definite abolishment of the death penalty in its internal legislation and accede (Ecuador);

            129.20          Abolish definitely death penalty (Spain);

            129.21          Seriously consider the possibility to abolish capital punishment (Italy);

            129.22          Take immediate steps towards the abolition of the death penalty in law (New Zealand);

            129.23          Decriminalize consenting homosexual relationships between persons over the age of consent by repealing Section 365A of the penal code (Canada);

            129.24          Adopt the draft bill on witness and victim protection (Germany);[ii]

            129.25          Adopt legislation on appointments that would ensure the independence of the Human Rights Commission (New Zealand)[iii];

            129.26          Enact the legislation to ensure the Right to Information and bring it in line with international human rights standards (Norway);[iv]

            129.27          Enact urgent legislative amendments to the Penal Code to ensure that the rights of women from all religious and ethnic communities are safeguarded (New Zealand)[v];

            129.28          Fully implement the recommendations of the LLRC, in particular steps to ensure independent and effective investigations into all allegations of serious human rights violations , in the context of Sri Lanka’s civil war and its aftermath (Austria )[vi]*;

            129.33          Rapidly implement the recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (France);[vii]*

            129.34          Continue implementing the recommendations of the LLRC report and the report of the Panel of Expert in accordance with the Human Rights Council Resolution 19/2 (Germany);

            129.35          Accelerate the process of putting into practice its National Action Plan for the promotion and protection of human rights launched in 2011, and its Action Plan for the implementation of the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry and Reconciliation adopted in July 2012, and fully cooperate with the UN mechanisms in order to rapidly turn the page on the atrocities of the civil war (Tunisia);

            129.36          Implement the constructive recommendations of the LLRC, including the removal of the military from civilian functions, creation of mechanisms to address cases of the missing and detained, issuance of death certificates, land reform; devolution of power; and disarming paramilitaries (USA);[viii]*

            129.37          Ensure the concrete implementation of the report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission and the National Strategy as envisaged by the Plan of Action (Belgium);[ix]*

            129.39          Initiate an inclusive dialogue which would guarantee minority representatives a fair joint-decision power on the basis of the four previous decisions (APRC Expert Majority Report, All Party Representative Committee Report, Proposals for Constitutional Reforms, and Mangala Report) (Switzerland 3)[x];

            129.42          Closely cooperate with the international community in implementing the recommendations by the LLRC and the National Action Plan for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights in the context of promoting reconciliation and accountability (Republic of Korea);

            129.43          Seek assistance of the international community, including relevant experiences, for the implementation of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission recommendations (Botswana);

            129.44          Take advantage fully and effectively from the technical assistance provided by the international community in the field of training and capacity-building of national institutions on human rights (Qatar);

            129.45          Guarantee access to the North and the East of the country to international and local humanitarian organizations specialized on family tracing and reunification programs (Uruguay);

            129.46          Expedite implementation of reconciliation measures in the North. This would include removing oversight of humanitarian and NGO activities from the purview of Ministry of Defense to a civilian body, reducing the intrusiveness of military presence on civilian life in the North and setting a specific date for free and fair Northern Provincial Council elections (Canada );

            129.47          Strengthen the capacities of its National Human Rights Commission, make it more independent and bring it in conformity with the Paris Principles (Tunisia)[xi]

            129.48          Adopt a national policy to provide human rights defenders with protection and ensure investigation and punishment of threats or attacks against them (Czech Republic);[xii]

            129.49          Fully cooperate with United Nations Human Rights mechanisms (Burkina Faso)[xiii];

            129.50          Continue its constructive engagement and cooperation with the international human rights mechanism, including through technical cooperation (Indonesia);

            129.51          Intensify its cooperation with the Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances to establish the fate of those who may have not been accounted for at the end of the armed conflict (Timor-Leste)[xiv];

            129.52          Invite the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances (France, Uruguay);[xv]

            129.53          Continue its constructive engagement with the United Nations Special Procedures, including the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances, by inviting the Working Group to visit the country (Brazil);[xvi]

            129.54          Accept the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances request for visit (Chile);[xvii]

            129.55          Ensure a climate in which all citizens are able to freely express their opinions and beliefs, without fear of reprisal or retribution and invite the Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression to visit (UK)[xviii];

            129.56          Extend a standing invitation to the United Nations Special Rapporteurs and normalize its relations and cooperation with United Nations Human Rights mechanisms (Belgium );

            129.57          Step up its cooperation with the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council by responding positively to the pending visit requests of the Special Procedures mandate holders and eventually consider extending a standing invitation to all the Special Procedures mandate holders of the Human Rights Council (Latvia);

            129.58          Further strengthen cooperation with the UN human rights mechanisms, particularly Special Procedures and try to respond in a timely manner to the questionnaires sent by the Special Procedures (Kazakhstan );

            129.59          Strengthen the measures to eliminate all discriminatory treatment based on sexual orientation or gender identity (Argentina );[xix]

            129.60          Take further steps  to ensure more participation of Sri Lankan Muslims in the reconciliation process and national efforts of economic, social, and cultural integration (Egypt );[xx]

            129.61          Take concrete measures in implementing the 30 percent quota for women in the nomination lists at national, provincial and local elections as pledged in the National Human Rights Action Plan (Norway )[xxi];

            129.62          Continue to focus on establishing and strengthening institutions of governance with a view to contributing towards adequate protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, provisions of adequate remedies where violations occur, and zero tolerance for impunity (South Africa );[xxii]

            129.63          Create a reliable investigation commission consisting of professional and independent investigators to identify, arrest and prosecute the perpetrators of the Muttur murders (France);[xxiii]

            129.64          Create an independent mechanism to look into the issue of disappeared persons with its own unique database (France);

            129.65          Publish the names and places of detention of all the imprisoned persons (France )[xxiv];

            129.66          Take action to reduce and eliminate all cases of abuse, torture or mistreatment by police and security forces (Australia );[xxv]

            129.67          Adopt further measures to prevent torture and ill-treatment in particular in prison and detention centers (Czech Republic);

            129.68          Establish an effective independent monitoring mechanism to investigate complaints of torture (Poland );[xxvi]

            129.69          Carry out independent investigations into possible cases of torture as well as reprisals related to cooperation with international human rights bodies (Poland );[xxvii]

            129.70          Determine the whereabouts of children whose fate is unknown (Uruguay);

            129.71          Take action to reduce and eliminate all cases of abductions and disappearances (Australia );[xxviii]

            129.72          Establish immediately a publicly accessible central register for all persons missing or in custody (Germany );[xxix]

            129.73          Establish a National Mechanism, as requested in the report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission, in order to shed light on the fate of all disappeared persons and detained persons and to cooperate with the ICRC and the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearance (Switzerland)[xxx];

            129.74          Maintain a public and accessible list of all detainees in the country, including those that were detained for incidents related with the armed conflict (Mexico)[xxxi];

            129.75          Strengthen relevant legislations and administrative measures to ensure transparency and non-impunity in the judicial process on all alleged enforced disappearance cases including investigation , prosecution and reparation , which would help contribute towards its national reconciliation ( Thailand); [xxxii]

            129.76          End impunity for human rights violations and fulfill legal obligations regarding accountability (USA);

            129.77          Take all necessary steps to fully commit to end impunity for international crimes by acceding to the Rome Statute of the ICC and to fully align its national legislation with all obligations under the Rome Statute (Sweden );

            129.78          Hold accountable all persons who are liable for the violation of human rights and humanitarian law (Estonia);

            129.79          Investigate and prosecute those responsible for abductions and forced disappearances and increase awareness of the State security services about these offences (Belgium);

            129.80          Make every effort to ensure that those responsible for crimes against children, and in particularly concerning the recruitment of child soldiers, are brought to justice as soon as possible (Sweden);[xxxiii]

            129.81          Implement the recommendations of the UN Panel of Experts on accountability, bringing all those allegedly responsible for violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law to justice in compliance with international standards (Slovakia);

            129.82          Improve detention conditions and respect for judicial guarantees for inmates, fighting against torture and inhuman and degrading treatment in detention centers in line with commitments taken during the May 2008 UPR session (Spain);

            129.83          Strengthen judicial independence by ending government interference with the judicial process, protecting members of the judiciary from attacks and restoring a fair, independent and transparent mechanism (USA);

            129.84          Take all necessary measures to ensure the independence and the integrity of the judiciary and oversight bodies (Poland );

            129.85          Safeguard the independence of its judiciary (Slovakia);

            129.86          Conduct impartial investigations and prosecutions against members of the security forces, regardless of rank, implicated in violations of human rights and international humanitarian law, including sexual violence (Denmark);

            129.87          Grant due process rights to all detainees held in both military and police facilities, including those held in administrative detention; disclose all unofficial detention sites; and facilitate effective and independent monitoring of detainees (Denmark );[xxxiv]

            129.88.         Allow the International Committee of the Red Cross unrestrictive access to detention centres (Costa Rica);[xxxv]

            129.89          Undertake measures that would allow citizens to have access to public information, in particular on alleged violations of human rights (Mexico);[xxxvi]

            129.90          Accelerate the improvement of the judicial, police, military and prison systems in line with international human rights standards and to investigate all allegations of extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary killings and enforced disappearances and follow-up according to justice requirements (Holy See);

            129.91          Transfer NGO oversight to a civilian institution and protect freedom of expression (USA);

            129.92          Adopt a National Policy on the protection of human rights defenders and journalists in order to prevent harassment and intimidation and to ensure effective investigation of such acts and prosecution of perpetrators (Austria );[xxxvii]

            129.93          Refrain from restricting access to and banning from websites and withdraw the Order of 5 November 2011 with requires news sites to be registered (Netherlands);[xxxviii]

            129.94          Desist from campaigns and threats against human rights defenders and ensure the investigation by an independent police commission into missing persons from this group, in line with the LLRC report recommendations on involuntary disappearances in a wider context (Netherlands );

            129.95          Ensure that all human rights defenders, including individuals cooperating with UN HR mechanisms, are protected effectively from unjustified criminalization, harassment or intimidation and can perform freely their legitimate duties (Slovakia) [xxxix];

            129.96          Take immediate steps to prevent attacks on the human rights defenders and media and take action to investigate such acts (Slovenia);

            129.97          Increase efforts aiming to guarantee the right to freedom of religion and belief (Spain 5)[xl]

            129.98          Continue to expand its social security coverage (South Africa);[xli]

            129.99          Create a mechanism to ensure that all internally displaced persons, including 66,151 “Old IDPS” and further 37,123 living with host communities, receive a written statement detailing their entitlements and plans for return to their original homes (Canada);

            129.100       Repeal Sections 9 (1) and 15 (A) (1) of the Prevention of Terrorism Act to ensure that detainees are held only in recognized places of detention, with regularized procedures and safeguards to protect detainees including access to legal representation and systematic notification to families of detainee whereabouts (Canada);



[i] Further consideration is required in view of the constitutional and legislative processes in the country.

[ii]  Enactment is the prerogative of Parliament. Draft Bill is before Cabinet

[iii] Action completed. These are special mechanisms created by the provisions of the Constitution and therefore enjoy functional and institutional independence.

[iv] Cabinet to decide the suitable time frame

[v] Articles 10, 12 of the Constitution ensure the protection of these rights.

[vi] Sri Lanka has undertaken to implement the National Action Plan on the implementation of the LLRC recommendations

[vii] Sri Lanka has undertaken to implement the National Action Plan on the implementation of the LLRC recommendations

[viii]  Sri Lanka has undertaken to implement the National Action Plan on the implementation of the LLRC recommendations

[ix] Sri Lanka has undertaken to implement the National Action Plan on the implementation of the LLRC recommendations

[x] Matter to be placed before the Parliamentary Select Committee for consideration.

[xi] This is an ongoing process given the highest priority as it is a Constitutional mechanism

[xii] The Government of Sri Lanka has a policy of protecting such persons as enshrined in the Fundamental Rights Chapter in the Constitution

[xiii] Action is in progress

 

[xv] Request for visit under consideration

[xvi] Request for visit under consideration

[xvii] Request for visit under consideration

[xviii] Invitation under consideration

[xix] The matter is presently under consideration

[xx] The Muslim community is already engaged in relevant discussions, and will also be represented in the proceedings of the Parliamentary Select Committee.

[xxi] Matter is under consideration in the context of relevant judicial pronouncements

[xxii] Action already undertaken.

[xxiii] Two special teams have been established within the Police and Attorney General’s Department to examine the relevant material

[xxiv] Procedure is governed by the rules under the Prison’s Ordinance

[xxv] The Government of Sri Lanka subscribes to a zero tolerance policy on Torture

[xxvi] Government of Sri Lanka has a zero tolerance policy on Torture. Special mechanisms are currently in place to enhance the protectionary measures by the circulars issued by the Executive.

[xxvii] Government of Sri Lanka has a zero tolerance policy on Torture. Special mechanisms are currently in place to enhance the protectionary measures by the circulars issued by the Executive.

[xxviii] Action underway

[xxix] Database accessible to NOK is already available

[xxx] Under consideration

[xxxi] Database accessible to NOK is already available

[xxxii]  Insufficient clarity of language

 

[xxxiii] Sri Lanka has been de-listed from Annex II of the UN Security Council Resolution 1612 on Children and Armed Conflict

[xxxiv] Unofficial detention sites are non-existent in Sri Lanka

[xxxv] The Government of Sri Lanka maintains a working relationship with the ICRC

[xxxvi] Cabinet to decide the suitable timeframe

[xxxvii] The Government of Sri Lanka has a policy of protecting such persons as enshrined in the Fundamental Rights Chapter in the Constitution

[xxxviii] The freedom of expression does not include the license to defame or vilify persons who have no effective redress and such media do not qualify for any special protection

[xxxix] They enjoy equal protection of the law as mandated by the Constitution

[xl] Article 10 of the Constitution ensures and affords protection of these rights which are entrenched. It is further guaranteed by Article 14 (1) (e)

[xli] Recommendation not clear

10 Comments for “Lanka rejects 98 recommendations at UPR”

  1. SRI LANKA WILL GET CAUGHT LIKE A RAT IN MARCH.2013 U.NO. SESSION?

  2. SRI LANKA WILL REJECT ANYTHING AT ANYTIME.

  3. Mahinda Samarasinghe thinks he can fool the international community with his lies. International community have all the evidence against Sri Lanka, It is not too late for Sri Lanka to act and implement what is recommended in the LLRC report. Sri Lanka should pay special attention to the minority issue. Appointing PSC is a way of fooling the international community.

  4. Francis

    Tamil people have seen many pledges from Sri lanka but no constructive plan for tamil people. only singhlas development will be updated as tamil development. They didnt allow anybody at the time of war in this juncture whatever they show as post war progress we have to belive. Socialism has gone to the cemetry in Cuba,China, and In Russia and they also lost their humanism. Neither tamil people should use Che,marx,mao nor the heartless country.

  5. sri(1)

    Voluntary pledges will be like the constitutions! Ask the judges who know it best.

  6. Not to worry. Just trash every recommendation one by one by taking your cool time, tactics which are usually used, promises usually made again and again…and oh well , Sri Lanka knows how to ‘handle’ these cases. They know it’s all a humbug of the world politics and they know they have the unofficial blessing and full support to do anything SL pleases. These reports are just for the world consumption and not to be taken seriously. Just play the game. You act like ‘hitting’ and I just act like crying. This is the world politics and we are the scape goats.

  7. Iqbal

    Many of the items listed above are not true as, for example, ‘xxvii] Government of Sri Lanka has a zero tolerance policy on Torture’ is a joke. Can the interrogations of suspects be held in front of ICRC or their lawyers?

  8. Kamal

    On one hand, having fooled the citizens of Sri Lanka for decades, our politicians are looking too sure of themselves, thinking no one can figure out what they are doing or even if they did, they can’t do anything about it.

    On the other hand, even if the International Community, decides enough is enough, what can they do? Embargo? Then, the poor citizens will suffer and our politicians will find a way to make some noise and come out looking like the heroes. Refuse loans? Well, China is ever ready to step in anytime World Bank of IMF tries to pull back. The politicians will still get their money but from a lender who will demand his pound of flesh in time to come. The citizens will still end up with the bill.

    Therefore, until the average voter realizes that his vote is more valuable than a packet of rice and his considerations must not be limited to who is going to fix the culvert near his home, I don’t see how this country will come out of this mess. Democracy and universal franchise is good, but it is high time we looked at improving upon these concepts.

  9. sangaralingham

    learn your religion and other religion all these incorporated in all religious basic concepts but nternational laws are there for us to protct humanity from evil minded people -

  10. sri(1)

    Without exception ALL the recomendations are spot on. SL can fool some of the countries some of the time but not all the countries of the world and the UN all the time! Surprising no country had called to lift the PTA which underlies the rogue nature of impunity ruining the lives of all citizens for so long. Also to halt the ethno-religious nature of the state in a multicutural country where all its citizens are treated equal before a proper constitution and the law. A make-over of the state and justice are urgent needs.

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