Sri Lanka: Human Rights

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 25th April 2017.

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Photo of Craig Whittaker Craig Whittaker Conservative, Calder Valley

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of the human rights situation in Sri Lanka; and what progress the Sri Lankan Government has made in improving human rights in that country.

Photo of Alok Sharma Alok Sharma The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

Since the election of President Sirisena in January 2015, the Sri Lankan government has made progress in addressing the legacy of its civil war, including the restoration of important democratic checks and balances, improvements in respect for freedoms of expression and movement, the return of some military-held land to civilians, passing of legislation to establish an Office for Missing Persons (OMP) and the ratification of the Convention on Enforced Disappearances. The Sri Lankan government has also co-sponsored two UN Human Rights Council resolutions on promoting reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka, in October 2015 and March 2017.

However, much remains to be done and the UK encourages the Government of Sri Lanka to now take the steps necessary to deliver in full the commitments it has made to its people and to the international community.

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