Saturday, November 28, 2009

Commonwealth leaders must focus on Sri Lanka crisis

Amnesty International has called on Commonwealth leaders to press the Sri Lankan government about the plight of the displaced.

The organization made the call in an open letter to heads of government attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Trinidad and Tobago this week.

The UK government said on Friday that it will oppose Sri Lanka hosting the next Commonwealth summit because of concerns over its conduct in the conflict and its treatment of refugees.

At least 130,000 people displaced by war and living in government camps in northern Sri Lanka are being denied their basic human rights, including liberty and freedom of movement.

Amnesty International has a global campaign, Unlock the Camps, calling on the Sri Lankan government to end its policy of forcibly confining people to camps, which amounts to arbitrary detention.

In recent weeks the government has speeded up releases from the camps. Amnesty International has welcomed the Sri Lankan government's recent promise to lift any restrictions on movement of at least 130,000 people still unlawfully detained by 1 December.

However, amid reports of some re-arrests following releases from the camps, the organization has called on the Sri Lankan authorities to abide by the principles of international humanitarian law and ensure that displaced people are supported to make voluntary and informed decisions about their future.

The open letter also asked Commonwealth leaders to support calls for greater accountability for abuses of human rights and humanitarian law suffered by Sri Lankan civilians.

Click here to read the open letter to Heads of Government attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting

© Amnesty International

Related Links:
UK wants to prevent Sri Lanka from hosting Commonwealth summit - Guardian
Canada opposes Sri Lanka's bid to host Commonwealth - The Star

Bookmark and Share

No comments:

Post a Comment

© 2009 - 2014 Journalists for Democracy in Sri Lanka

  © Blogger template 'Fly Away' by 2008

Back to TOP