Sri Lanka: War Crimes

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 5th January 2010.

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Photo of Keith Simpson Keith Simpson Shadow Minister (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment has been made of the Sri Lankan Government's progress towards establishing an accountability mechanism for allegations of war crimes which took place during the military conflict in the north of the country; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Ivan Lewis Ivan Lewis Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

The EU has made clear its belief that accountability is integral to the process of reconciliation. We therefore welcome President Rajapakse's decision to appoint an independent committee to look into the incidents cited in the US State Department's report. We will continue to press the Government of Sri Lanka to live up to this and the earlier commitment made by President Rajapakse to UN Secretary General Ban Ki- moon in May to take measures to address possible violations of international humanitarian law. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary released a written ministerial statement on 15 December 2009, which gives a detailed assessment of the political situation in Sri Lanka. A link to the statement can be found at the following internet address:

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmhansrd/cm091215/wmstext/91215m0003.htm#09121534000482

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