Sri Lanka says UN rights report 'fundamentally flawed'

5th March 2014, Comments 0 comments

Sri Lanka on Wednesday dismissed a UN report calling for an international probe into allegations of war crimes at the end of its civil war as "fundamentally flawed."

Foreign Minister Gamini Lakshman Peiris said his government rejected a report from UN human rights chief Navi Pillay "in its entirety," describing it as "arbitrary, intrusive" and "fundamentally flawed."

"The High Commissioner's report and those who exalt its virtues only seek to inflict harm on the reconciliation process by bringing about a polarisation of Sri Lankan society," he told the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

Pillay's report, which she is scheduled to present to the council on March 26, calls for an international investigation into allegations that 40,000 civilians were killed in the final stages of Sri Lanka's Tamil civil war in May 2009.

A US-led draft resolution endorsing Pillay's recommendations was posted on the council's website on Tuesday.

The council is expected to vote on the resolution -- the third in as many years against Colombo -- on March 28.

Sri Lanka has already rejected Pillay's call for an international probe as an "unwarranted interference", and President Mahinda Rajapakse has accused Washington of treating Colombo like Muhammad Ali's "punching bag".

Sri Lanka has previously said it needs more time to address issues of accountability and reconciliation after ending the 37-year-old conflict, which according to UN estimates claimed at least 100,000 lives.

Peiris insisted Wednesday that for Sri Lanka to be judged on the basis of Pillay's report, which he said contained "considerable factual inaccuracies and misperceptions," would be "a travesty of justice."

© 2014 AFP

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