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UNP faults Govt. for HR-protecting CHOGM communique

2013 Nov 26

One week after the UNP boycotted the Commonwealth summit in Colombo after State-sponsored demonstrators broke up a human rights festival at its headquarters, the main Opposition party has found fault with the Government for signing the CHOGM Communiqué in which world leaders have agreed in principle to the setting up of a World Human Rights Court.
Accusing the Rajapaksa Government of only making pretentions to patriotism domestically, the UNP issued a Special Announcement yesterday saying Article 39 of the CHOGM Communiqué noted the Vienna 20+ process and committed signatories strengthen further the international human rights system including the Universal Periodic Review (UPR).
According to the UNP, the Vienna 20+ Process in Article 10 contemplates the establishment of a World Human Rights Court.
“It was Mr. Rajapaksa who took this country’s human rights issues to the world. It was Mr. Rajapaksa who provided assurances to the UN Human Rights Council. It was Mr. Rajapaksa who accepted Darusman Report. It was Mr. Rajapaksa that established the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission and promised the UNHRC that he would implement its recommendations. And now it is Mr. Rajapaksa and no other who has signed the CHOGM Communiqué and agreed to the setting up of a World Human Rights Court,” the statement said.
“In Sri Lanka, he portrays a different story. He tells people in Sri Lanka that he will not betray the country before the world. He tells the country that he will defend the country with his life,” the UNP said.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe had refused to sign the Rome Statute that set up the International Criminal Court in 2002 because becoming a signatory would mean any Lankan citizen could be produced before the ICC.
“But it is the UNP and Mr. Wickremesinghe that the traitor label is being used,” the statement noted.
“The current ‘patriotic’ Government has for the sake of the Commonwealth chairmanship, agreed to the setting up of a World Human Rights Court, thereby relegating its citizens to the electric chair,” the statement said.

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