Addressing the discussion board in Geneva, Deputy Excessive Commissioner for Human Rights, Nada-Al Nashif additionally urged the Sri Lankan authorities to speed up investigations and prosecutions probing instances of human rights violations, specifically, the 2019 Easter Sunday bombings.
Ms. Al-Nashif famous that investigations ought to adjust to worldwide human rights requirements. Her feedback comply with repeated calls to the Authorities of Sri Lanka to determine an impartial probe into the bombing marketing campaign that left 269 folks lifeless and extra 500 injured.
Though the Authorities has carried out financial restoration insurance policies, the nation continues to be gripped by the aftermath of the deep financial disaster of 2022 and stresses within the world financial system, the UN deputy rights chief mentioned.
The legacy of that disaster “has impacted the poor and marginalized communities probably the most”, Ms. Al-Nashif defined, noting that one other 2.5 million folks had been pushed into poverty between 2021 and 2022, whereas an estimated 37 per cent of households face acute meals insecurity.
The Deputy Excessive Commissioner emphasised that such hardship has given rise to tensions and additional protests. These have additionally been sparked by problems with land acquisition within the north and east of the nation for the growth of navy installations.
The UN human rights physique additionally heard that delays in holding native authorities elections mixed with the legal guidelines that restrict folks’s proper to political participation and protest had additionally elevated tensions.
“Our Workplace continues to obtain instances of misuse of tear gasoline and water cannons throughout demonstrations, affecting protestors and media personnel,” Ms. Al-Nashif mentioned.
Whereas recognizing the Authorities’s proposal for a brand new truth-seeking mechanism as a part of efforts to advertise reconciliation throughout Sri Lanka within the aftermath of a brutal civil battle, she emphasised that extra wanted to be executed.
“Fourteen years for the reason that battle ended, tens of hundreds of victims and their households proceed to endure in agony and grief as they look ahead to reality, justice, and treatment, mentioned Ms. Al-Nashif.
“Fact looking for alone just isn’t enough and should be accompanied by clear dedication to accountability.”
‘Unproductive and unhelpful’: Sri Lanka responds
Sri Lanka rejected the OHCHR findings, its conclusions and proposals regarding the 2 resolutions below which the UN rights workplace is remitted to research and report on the nation.
In an announcement, Sri Lanka mentioned the report was an “unproductive and unhelpful drain” on sources, which didn’t mirror the state of affairs on the bottom, claiming that OHCHR had ignored the nation’s “democratic resilience”.