UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Thursday, 22 August 2013 12:13

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay’s Visit to Tamil Area: August 25-31, 2013. Tamils Could Expect Justice from Pillay and Should Ask for International Investigation HE Navanethem "Navi" Pillay is the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. She is from South Africa of Indian Tamil origin. She has served as a judge of the International Criminal Court and President of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon appointed her as the High Commissioner for Human Rights in 2008 and her term will end in 2014. The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is comprised of 47 countries, and is one of the most prominent institutions of the UN. The UNHRC functions with the leadership and advice of Pillay’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). The mandate of Pillay’s OHCHR is to promote and protect the human rights under international law in all countries including Sri Lanka. She has been very critical of the Sri Lankan government’s treatment of Tamils and has been campaigning for International Investigation on crimes committed against the Tamil people in 2009. She believes only an International Investigation can bring justice to the Tamils and seeking support to her campaign. With her support, Tamils can hope for justice through a UNHRC mechanism, but this needs to be achieved before her term expires next year. Tamils should stress and explain why a domestic mechanism such as LLRC under Sri Lankan government will never give them justice and urge her to initiate an International Independent Investigation to bring out the truth and justice. The US has passed two resolutions against Sri Lanka at the UNHRC and taking a lead role to bring justice to Tamils through the UNHRC. The next possible resolution in March 2014 may lead to International Investigation if the Tamil people overwhelmingly ask for it and convince Pillay and the International Community for such an international mechanism by the UN. The only hope for the Tamils for justice at this time is through the International Investigation by the UN. The Tamil people should provide all necessary information to Pillay and her office and urge her to bring an International Independent Investigation that can look into all atrocities

and offer them justice. This may be the last chance for the Tamils. Purpose of Pillay’s Visit to Sri Lanka Pillay is visiting Sri Lanka to mainly meet with the Tamil victims and people to find out more about the crimes committed during the war. She wants to ensure that the crimes committed against the Tamil people will be addressed properly and the Tamil people are given justice. It is believed that she is collecting information on evidence of war-crimes, crimes against humanity and other crimes against Tamil people. Her office is expected to submit a report to the UNHRC of her finding. This report will decide the next course of action for UNHRC. What Tamils Can Expect and How They Can Help Tamil people should meet Pillay and urge her to set up an Independent International Investigation. They should let her know why they don’t have confidence in the government of Sri Lanka. They should let her know that only an International Investigation can bring justice to the Tamils and the only and the last hope they have is her and the UN. Although other pressing issues can be brought to her attention, the main and the first request should lead to the International Investigation! In addition to meeting her, Tamil people also should give their request in writing. Local organizations, each MP, NPC candidates, branches of political parties, president/secretary of the local organizations/societies, doctors, hospital employees, professionals, student unions/groups, civic/citizen groups, journalists, principals, professors, lecturers, teachers, religious leaders, prominent people, community leaders, members of general public should hand over letters stating the violations and urging her to set up an International Investigation that can offer them justice. Their confidentiality is secure as the letters to her will not be made known to Sri Lankan government or any of its officials or the military. Tamils should provide Pillay with complaints on all issues that affected them. Without any exaggeration, they should let her know on what they have seen or heard and provide information on evidences, witnesses, chemical weapons, places of killings, rapes, injuries, destructions, and bodies burnt or buried. Relatives and friends of dead and missing persons should meet her, provide information and urge her for justice in the common interests of the victims. Anyone that is affected by the Sri Lankan military or has concern for Tamil community should meet her and send her requests in writing. The UN’s next move may depend on what the Tamil people urge Pillay to do next. Only an International Investigation can bring justice to Tamils and this may also lead to a dignified internationally brokered political solution. Tamils should firmly ask for International Independent Investigation by the UN. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

----Please ensure your report/complaint is max of 2 pages and contains valuable information that is related to human rights violation, which requires further investigation. Please send your report/complaint to the following address/fax/email by August 20, 2013, so that she will have enough time to read them ahead of her trip: Mailing Address: HE Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights C/O Cynthia Veliko, Human Rights Advisor UN Office of the Resident Coordinator 202-204, Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 7 Email: cynthia.veliko@one.un.org Navi Pillay’s Visit to Tamil Area:

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