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Sri Lanka: Politics and Government

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 3rd May 2011.

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Photo of Mike Hancock Mike Hancock Liberal Democrat, Portsmouth South

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent assessment he has made of the state of civil society in Sri Lanka.

Photo of Alistair Burt Alistair Burt The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s (FCO) 2010 Human Rights and Democracy Report highlights areas of progress, as well as the challenges that remain. The report is available on the FCO Website at:

http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/global-issues/human-rights/around-the-world/human-rights-report/

We remain concerned about the difficult environment for civil society groups, media and opposition. Prominent human rights defenders have faced criticism from the Government, human rights organisations have experienced difficulties with visas to work in Sri Lanka and activists have been intimidated when carrying out their work. We continue to make our concerns known to the Government of Sri Lanka most recently when I met the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister on 31 March 2011.

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