Sri Lanka hopeful of riding out storm at UN meet

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Colombo, Mar 3: Sri Lanka is hopeful that it may be able to ride out a storm building against it at ongoing session of the UN Human Rights Council at Geneva where US is seeking to put Colombo in the dock over rights abuses.

Mahinda Samarasinghe, the head of the Sri Lankan delegation currently on a short break here, has claimed that Colombo would be able to garner enough support to stave off a strong resolution against it on the issue.

"It is no easy job to fight with US, the world's most powerful nation. But we are buoyed by the pledges of support from countries who want to oppose the US move", Samarasinghe told reporters here today.

"The non-aligned countries and the 53 member Islamic nations group have already spoken in our favour", Samarasinghe claimed.

The US has sponsored a resolution at the session seeking to make Lanka implement pledges on devolution of power as recommended by the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).

Sri Lanka views the resolution as an interference in its internal matters and has sought more time from the international community to implement the reconciliation.

US and the West feel that Sri Lanka had dragged its feet too much on the issue of accountability to alleged rights violations during the last stages of the military conflict with the LTTE in 2009.

Sri Lanka blames the pro-LTTE diaspora of influencing the Western governments to act against the country as revenge over the crushing military defeat.

PTI

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