Sri Lanka: what the UN council should have addressed; possible help from Rep. Shuler

May 29, 2009

Yesterday, I wrote on this blog about how the UN Human Rights Council failed to protect human rights with its recent resolution on Sri Lanka.  If you want to learn about the violations that the Council should have addressed, read the Sri Lanka entry from the Amnesty International 2009 Report, which has just been released.  It details the abuses committed during 2008 by the Sri Lankan security forces as well as the opposition Tamil Tigers.

On a separate note, if you’re a constituent of U.S. Representative Heath Shuler (11th District, North Carolina) or know someone who is, you should know that the Congressman has just concluded a visit to Sri Lanka (at least, according to the Sri Lankan Defence Ministry).  It’d be great if his constituents could write to him and get him to press the Sri Lankan government to give journalists and aid agencies full, unimpeded access to the hundreds of thousands of displaced civilians in internment camps in northern Sri Lanka.  I’d also appreciate it if his constituents could get him to come out publicly in favor of an international investigation into the human rights abuses and war crimes committed by both sides during the conflict in Sri Lanka.  If the Congressman adds his voice to those of Amnesty International, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and The New York Times (all of whom have called for such an international investigation), maybe we can get the U.S. and other governments to establish one during next week’s regular session of the UN Human Rights Council.