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LLRC undecided on experts panel

LLRC undecided on experts panel

2010 Dec 21

Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) Secretary S.B. Atugoda said yesterday the Commission would decide whether it was necessary to meet the United Nations Experts Panel probing alleged human rights violations in Sri Lanka.

Mr. Atugoda said neither the government nor the UN had approached the LLRC about a meeting between the commissioners and the Experts Panel though he was aware of such an interest shown by the Panel. “We are an independent body.
Therefore if the UN panel is visiting Sri Lanka it is welcome to request for such a meeting. However, the feasibility of such a meeting will be decided only after a discussion with the commissioners,” he added.

Meanwhile, the External Affairs Ministry in a statement claimed it would make necessary arrangements for the Experts Panel to meet LLRC commissioners if they wished to do so.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon told a media conference last Saturday that the panel of experts probing Sri Lanka’s accountability issues would be visiting Sri Lanka and meeting the LLRC commissioners.

The appointment of the panel in September was vehemently opposed by the government and was not allowed to enter the country for any investigations. However, Mr. Ban said the panel’s anticipated visit was a result of a series of consultations with President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

The UN Experts Panel is due to submit a report on Sri Lanka’s war and the accountability issues by the middle of January next year.

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