The Sunday Leader

NEWS UPDATE: UNHRC sessions underway in Geneva


The 22nd Session of the Human Rights Council opened today with statements by Remigiusz A. Henczel President of the Human Rights Council, Vuk Jeremic, President of the General Assembly and Navanethem Pillay, High Commissioner for Human Rights.

This was followed by the commencement of the High Level segment where country statements were delivered. Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha and members of the delegation attended the session. The current session runs through the 22 March 2013. Sri Lanka is due to engage the Council under relevant agenda items and a number of thematic sessions.

Today’s agenda also included a High Level Panel on Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action (VDPA) today. Intervening during the Panel, Deputy Permanent Representative Manisha Gunasekera “recalled that the promotion and protection of human rights as enshrined in the VDPA should be carried out in a spirit of cooperation, mutual respect and dialogue, and in conformity with the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, and norms governing international relations”.

It was noted that “Sri Lanka is particularly mindful of the VDPA’s affirmation of the universality, indivisibility, interdependence and interrelatedness of human rights which denotes the equal importance of civil and political rights and economic, social and cultural rights” stressed the delegation.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, making a video statement during the panel highlighted that promoting and protecting rights was confirmed as a priority United Nations objective and this lead to the crucial decision to create the post of High Commissoner for Human Rights.

The High Commissioner for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay while making her statement said VDPA is the most significant overarching human rights document produced in the last quarter of century and said that the most pertinent feature in this document is its universality.

Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe, Minister of Plantation Industries and the President’s Special Envoy on Human Rights and leader of the Sri Lanka delegation, who is due to arrive in Geneva on Tuesday, will deliver Sri Lanka’s National Statement during the High Level segment of the Human Rights Council on Wednesday.

1 Comment for “NEWS UPDATE: UNHRC sessions underway in Geneva”

  1. This year Srilanka in going to have a bad time in UN. There is no point in denying all the allegations levelled against Srilanka. Channel 4, unlike Srilankan media, will not release news unless they are 100% confident that their stories are genuine. Why our government keep on denying these allegations. Why not the government allow UN to visit Srilanka and investigate these so called war crimes. I think our government is trying to hide something away from the international community. I put the whole blame on our own government for draging these issues too long. Those who suuffered as the result of this war should get justice. What we are doing today is celebrating the victory over LTTE every year. The victims are the one who are really suffering. When will our President realise his sin.

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