Sri Lanka wins backing of 22 nations against UN rights probe

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UN rights probe: SL wins support
Colombo, Sep 27: Sri Lanka has won the backing of 22 nations in its battle against the UN's war crimes probe into the country's human rights record during its brutal civil war.

A government statement said the countries in a joint statement had termed the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) resolution passed last March as an intrusive mandate and unwarranted in the context of Sri Lanka's own local investigation.

The like minded group chaired by Egypt included Algeria, Angola, Bangladesh, Belarus, Bolivia, China, Cuba, Ecuador, Indonesia, Iran, North Korea, Myanmar, Nicaragua, Pakistan,Russia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda, Venezuela and Zimbabwe.

This support was in addition to the concerns raised by India as Sri Lanka's all important giant neighbour had questioned the methodology of the investigation.

This is in view of Sri Lanka's decision not to cooperate with the investigation. India backed the US-sponsored 2012 and 2013 UNHRC resolutions which pinned Colombo to a credible process of reconciliation with the Tamil minority.

However, India much to the delight of Sri Lanka abstained at the crucial vote last March which mandated an international investigation.

Sri Lanka's opposition is based on its reliance to deliver reconciliation and justice through its own mechanism. Colombo dubs the UN investigation as one which impedes its sovereignty.

The UNHRC resolution had alleged war crimes blamed on both government troops and LTTE rebels during the final phase of the three-decade civil war. The UN says 30,000 people were killed towards the end of the ethnic conflict in 2009 when the LTTE was finally crushed.

PTI

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