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Ad ance -dited .ersion

$istr.% General 24 &ebruary 2'14 (riginal% English

Human Rights Council

Twenty-fifth session Agenda item 2 Annual report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and reports of the Office of the High Commissioner and the Secretary-General

Comments recei ed from the !ermanent "ission of Sri #an$a on the draft report of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on promoting reconciliation and accounta%ility in Sri #an$a &A'HRC'()'(*+

Circulated as received, in the language of submission only.



[English only]


General o%ser ations

1. )his may be read *ithout +re,udice to the Government of -ri .an/a0s 1G(-.2 +osition of re,ection of resolution 22/1. )he Go-. *ishes to observe that the mandate of !esolution 22/1 is +laced *ithin the broad +arameters of re3uesting the Go-. to im+lement the recommendations of the ..!C. )he igh Commissioner0s draft !e+ort to !C 2" 1A/ !C/2"/242 ho*ever goes beyond the mandate granted by resolution 22/1 in ma/ing reference to and recommendations on numerous issues e5traneous to the resolution under reference, as *ell as in its re3uest to establish an international in3uiry mechanism to further investigate alleged violations. Additionally, the recommendations are arbitrary, intrusive and of a +olitical nature, and are not +laced *ithin the ambit of the ..!C as mandated by 22/1. )he Go-. *ishes to res+ectfully submit that the above is in contravention of the rules of +rocedure governing the conduct of the Council as sti+ulated in GA resolution 6'/2"1 and !C resolutions "/1 and "/2. 2. )he Go-. *ishes to re3uest the ( C ! to delete references to the discredited 78-G0s 9anel of E5+erts 19(E2 !e+ort on -ri .an/a contained in the +aragra+hs 6, 4:, 6", :1, and in footnotes 4' and 44, as *ell as the full lin/ to the 9(E !e+ort given in the t*o footnotes under reference, for the follo*ing reasons% 1a2 )he 9(E *as not referred to in the !esolution 22/1 on 9romoting !econciliation and Accountability in -ri .an/a and therefore alluding to it in the !e+ort A/ !C/2"/24 clearly ta/es it beyond the sco+e and mandate of !esolution 22/1; 1b2 )he 9(E !e+ort on -ri .an/a *hich *as commissioned by the 78 -ecretary General *as the culmination of a +rivate consultation that the latter sought for his o*n advice, and is not the +roduct or re3uest of the 78 uman !ights Council, the 78 General Assembly or any other 78 body. As it has not received the endorsement of the intergovernmental +rocess, it has neither credence nor legitimacy *ithin intergovernmental for a; 1c2 )he 9(E0s mandate did not e5tend to fact finding or investigation. <n its !e+ort, the three-member 9anel also ma/es it clear that the assertions set out therein remain unsubstantiated and re3uire a higher standard of +roof; 1d2 &or the above reasons, the Go-. does not e5tend any credence or legitimacy to the 9(E !e+ort and +rotests reference to it in the Council, and +articularly in this instance *here it is clearly not mandated by the Council; 1e2 <t may be further noted that the 9(E though invited by the ..!C to ma/e re+resentation to the Commission, chose not to +resent themselves before the Commission for reasons best /no*n to them.


-ngagement %y OHCHR and Special !rocedures of the Human Rights Council

4. -ri .an/a has consistently interacted *ith the 7nited 8ations system and the *ider international community in a s+irit of good*ill and coo+eration. <t is in this conte5t that -ri


.an/a remains committed to a +ositive engagement *ith the ( C ! and -+ecial 9rocedures =andate olders of the uman !ights Council. 4. <n +ursuance of this ob,ective, -ri .an/a facilitated an advance mission by officials of the ( C ! to -ri .an/a in 2'12 *hich *as follo*ed by the visit of the igh Commissioner for uman !ights *hich too/ +lace from 2"-41 August 2'14, +ursuant to an invitation e5tended by G(-. in early 2'11. >y the igh Commissioner?s o*n admission it *as her @longest visit@, and *hile in -ri .an/a she *as able to @go any*here and see anythingA that she B*ished to see@ including the former conflict-affected 8orthern and Eastern +rovinces; she had the o++ortunity to call on the 9resident and have candid discussions *ith senior Cabinet =inisters, Government officials and o++osition =9s. -he also noted that she *as able to meet inde+endently *ith a *ide range of civil society re+resentatives and attend events organised by civil society activists and organiCations. ence, there *as legitimate e5+ectation that the igh Commissioner *ould ado+t an ob,ective and unbiased a++roach to the country. <t is unfortunate that this has not been the case. ". )he Go-. has continued its engagement *ith -+ecial 9rocedures, and its 9ermanent !e+resentative in Geneva has engaged in a regular dialogue *ith them including the -! on )ruth, Dustice, !e+aration and Guarantees of 8on-recurrence =r. 9ablo de Greiff and the -! on E5tra,udicial, -ummary, or Arbitrary E5ecutions =r. Christof eyns. )he Go-. has also conducted regular meetings *ith the Eor/ing Grou+ on Enforced or <nvoluntary $isa++earances 1EGE<$2, including *ith senior re+resentation from -ri .an/a0s Attorney General0s $e+artment. -ince Danuary 2'12, the Go-. has transmitted res+onses on F42 cases to the Eor/ing Grou+. Additionally, an <nter-Agency )as/ &orce has been established to res+ond to the Eor/ing Grou+. &urther, at the meeting *ith the EGE<$ it has been informed that the latter0s re3uest to visit is under consideration as *ith other similar re3uests, *hich *ill be +rocessed as mutually convenient and ta/ing into account national im+eratives. 6. )he Go-. has already informed the uman !ights Council, it *ill continue to schedule +ending visits of -+ecial 9rocedures mandate holders to -ri .an/a follo*ing the visit of the igh Commissioner. <n line *ith this commitment, the Go-. has e5tended three invitations to -+ecial 9rocedures since August 2'14 and the -! on uman !ights of <$9s, $r Chalo/ya >eyani visited -ri .an/a in $ecember 2'14. :. As +reviously committed at the 79!, the Go-. agreed to im+lement recommendations of the ..!C in line *ith the 89oA, and also ma/e available financial and other resources for same. Additionally, -ri .an/a made 1# voluntary commitments in relation to the 79!. )he Go-. is of the vie* that the 79! second cycle on -ri .an/a is an a++ro+riate conte5t to e5+lore avenues for technical coo+eration. igh Commissioner0s letters to Go-. containing, inter alia, offers of technical assistance in s+ecific areas *ere received on 41 (ctober 2'14. <n this conte5t, it is observed that in /ee+ing *ith !C !esolution "/1, offers of technical assistance need to be made in consultation *ith and *ith the concurrence of the receiving -tate. )he Go-. remains o+en to consideration of technical coo+eration from the ( C ! in some /ey areas of reconciliation, in line *ith the needs of the country, in the conte5t of im+lementing the acce+ted recommendations of its 79! 2nd cycle. -ri .an/a has also underta/en commitments on technical coo+eration under the 78 $evelo+ment Assistance &rame*or/ 2'14-2'1:. F. 7nder -ection << of the igh Commissioner0s !e+ort, she has additionally raised concerns regarding a range of issues based on information of 3uestionable veracity and arrived at conclusions in a selective and arbitrary manner. #. 7nli/e some other countries, -ri .an/a does not have com+ulsory military service or conscri+tion. Even at the height of the armed conflict, the Go-. did not resort to any


conscri+tion into the armed forces. -ri .an/a adheres to an BAll GolunteerA conce+t and thus enlistment to the armed forces is entirely at the free *ill of citiCens. 7nder the -ri .an/a la*, the su+reme legislative organ, the 9arliament, is entrusted *ith the +o*er to raise and maintain armed forces. -ri .an/a0s military is a disci+lined entity tas/ed to +rotect the country0s territorial integrity, maritime boundary, national strategic interest and overall safety and security of the nation and its citiCens. )herefore, considering the national security re3uirements and threat +erce+tion, the siCe of the armed forces is evaluated from time to time. -trength and siCe of the armed forces and their de+loyment is a matter e5clusively vested *ith an inde+endent sovereign state. <t is not the mandate of the igh Commissioner for uman !ights of the 78 to call for the demobiliCation and disarmament of the military of a sovereign -tate and set timelines for same and the Go-. *ishes to em+hasiCe that it does not intend to disarm or demobiliCe its military. )he Go-. continues to evaluate and rationaliCe military +resence according to national security im+eratives. )he timelines for such activities correlates directly to the threat +erce+tions of the Go-. to national security and is one *hich evolves as situations unfold. 1'. &ollo*ing the termination of military o+erations against the .))E in 2''#, the Go-. has underta/en a gradual +rocess of reduction of military +resence in former conflict affected areas. <t may be noted that the total strength of the military in the 8orthern 9rovince has been reduced by a++ro5imately 4'H from 2''# to (ctober 2'14, a +rocess *hich is continuing to ta/e +lace. <n addition, in the Eastern 9rovince a++ro5imately 26H reduction of troo+ +resence has been underta/en. Also "'H of the troo+s have been de+loyed in areas *hich *ere not affected by the conflict. 11. )he follo*ing concrete ste+s ta/en by the Go-. can be highlighted in this regard% 1a2 )he former igh -ecurity Iones 1 -Is2 have ceased to e5ist. )he 9alaly Cantonment is no* the only area in *hich some security restrictions remain, but even *ithin the Cantonment, civilians have unrestricted access to the air+ort at 9alaly and the Jan/esanthurai harbour. Action is also being ta/en to release lands *ithin the Cantonment area for agricultural and religious activities; 1b2 Ehile it is true that there are still some civilian +ro+erties included in the Cantonment, it must be stressed that civilians have not occu+ied these +ro+erties for the last t*enty to t*enty-five years. )he Government has ta/en measures to +ay com+ensation to the o*ners of these +ro+erties and to +rovide alternate land to them. <t should also be noted that lands that had been forcefully ta/en from the +eo+le and occu+ied by the .))E for many years have also been released to their legal o*ners. )he former -I in the Eastern 9rovince located in the -am+ur area from 2'': has been reduced in e5tent by 6"H and declared a .icensed Ione under the >oard of <nvestment; 1c2 As at Danuary 2'14 the Go-. has released 1#,422 acres of +rivate land and 2,"1F acres of -tate o*ned land in the 8orthern 9rovince *hich *ere hitherto occu+ied by the military. <n the East, the Go-. has released 6F# acres of +rivate land and 4,222 acres of -tate land. )herefore the total figure of lands released in the 8orth and the East amounts to 2','11 acres of +rivate land and ",:4' acres of -tate land; 1d2 )he full res+onsibility for .a* and (rder has been handed over to the 9olice. A ne* =inistry of .a* and (rder has also been created. 16 ne* 9olice -tations and 4 ne* +osts have been established and recruitment of more )amil s+ea/ing 9olice +ersonnel 11,44:2 has ta/en +lace. )amil language training is also being +rovided to additional numbers of 9olice +ersonnel. 4,424 9olice officials have been given )amil language training in the +eriod 2''# K 2'12 and 4'# 9olice officials have been given English language training during this same +eriod. )his is in line *ith the Go-.0s overall +olicy of +romoting trilingual com+etency among +ublic officers;


1e2 All schools in the 8orthern 9rovince used by the -ri .an/a military have been handed over to civilian use. )he schools occu+ied by the .))E *ere renovated by the Government and handed over to the res+ective Conal directors of education *hich *as only +ossible because the *ar ended; 1f2 )he military has no involvement in civilian administration. )he civil administration system in the 8orth and East is fully functional and discharging their duties. )he culmination of this +rocess *as the successful conclusion of 9rovincial Council elections in the 8orth in 2'14 and the establishment of the 8orthern 9rovincial Council; 1g2 )he activities carried out by the -ri .an/an military are *ithin the ambit of Civil =ilitary Coo+eration and are not intended to usur+ the +o*ers of civil administration. )hese activities are similar to +ost-conflict activities underta/en by military forces across the globe and involve reconstruction/renovation of houses, +rovision of ade3uate safe drin/ing *ater, construction of sanitary facilities, reconstruction of religious +laces for communities, im+roving access roads, irrigation +ro,ects etc. Ehilst these *ere underta/en more intensively in the immediate +ost-conflict +eriod, these activities have also become limited due to the strengthening of civilian institutions and their ca+acity to underta/e such *or/. 12. As outlined above, the aforementioned meaningful ste+s have been ta/en by the Go-. *hich are a +art of the +rocess of reduction of the military +resence in former conflict affected areas. )herefore, the assertion by the igh Commissioner regarding demilitariCation is erroneous and misleading. <t see/s to create the im+ression that the +resence of the military in these areas remains the same as during the conflict. 14. Given that for over 4' years the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country *as threatened by a terrorist grou+, the Go-. has legitimate concerns regarding resurgence of terrorist activity in the areas in *hich they *ere fully functional and therefore national security interests +lay a crucial role in decisions regarding the level of military +resence in those areas in order to +revent any recurrence in the future. 14. <n addition, there have also been re+eated attem+ts, including by the igh Commissioner, to dra* a non-e5istent correlation bet*een the +resence of the military and vulnerability of *omen to se5ual harassment and violence in the 8orth. )his +osition is not borne out by the available statistics. )he Go-. in its statement to the 24th Council highlighted that a survey conducted covering the +eriod 2'':-2'12 had revealed that of the re+orted incidents of se5ual violence in the 8orth a large ma,ority *ere carried out by close relatives/ neighbors and only a very fe* could be attributed to the -ecurity &orces. <n all these cases involving -ecurity &orces +ersonnel disci+linary and legal action has been ta/en. )he military has ta/en strict action to either discharge or a*ard other +unishments to these +ersonnel. &urthermore, cases have been filed in civil courts, some of *hich are +ending in Courts and *ith the AG0s de+artment. 1". &urthermore, the Go-. *ishes to reiterate that there e5ists no basis for concerns as e5+ressed by the igh Commissioner *ith regard to +resence of the security forces contributing to the vulnerability of *omen to se5ual violence in the 8orth. )he Go-. de+lores all acts of violence against *omen and girls and has ta/en concrete action against re+orted cases and *ill continue to do so. )he Go-. re3uests the igh Commissioner to +rovide factual evidence to substantiate this allegation and to refrain from ma/ing general comments *ithout a degree of s+ecificity *hich *ould allo* the Go-. to investigate and res+ond in a com+rehensive manner. 16. -ri .an/a had initiated action to +re+are legislation *ith regard to Eitness and Gictim 9rotection. Conse3uent to e5tensive consultation in this regard, including e5amination by the Cabinet -ub Committee on .egislation and action being ta/en thereon by the .egal $raftsman, the finaliCation of legislation is in +rogress. )he need for


legislation for the criminaliCation of disa++earances is being e5amined by a Committee a++ointed by the =inistry of Dustice, in consultation *ith the Attorney General. &urther, amending legislation to enhance e5isting +rovisions in the 9enal Code and the <CC9! Act *ith regard to hate s+eech has been +re+ared. 1:. >ilateral discussions are ongoing *ith regard to a truth see/ing mechanism. Eith regard to re+aration +olicies, they are entrenched in the e5isting domestic legislation. )hey are im+lemented through administrative and ,udicial +rocesses.


Recent human rights de elopments

1F. Eith regard to the igh Commissioner0s (ral 7+date at the 24th -ession of the Council it may be recalled that the Go-. +rovided its observations on the issues referred to therein. 1#. )he Go-. re,ects the assertion that there is an undermining of the inde+endence of the ,udiciary. Administration of ,ustice, inclusive of inde+endence of the ,udiciary is constitutionally en,oined and any infringement of these entrenched rights is visited *ith sanctions. Dudges hold office during good behavior and +roven misbehavior or inca+acity triggers constitutionally entrenched disci+linary +roceedings. Any +rocedure ado+ted in this regard has been in accordance *ith the Constitution and such com+liance *ith constitutional +rovisions cannot be regarded as undermining the inde+endence of the ,udiciary. 2'. <t is mandatory for all <8G(s and 8G(s *or/ing in -ri .an/a to register *ith the 8G( -ecretariat *hich is under the =inistry of $efence L 7rban $evelo+ment. )hey are also re3uired to submit com+rehensive details on their +ro+osed activities in the country. )he incidents under reference in +aragra+h 1" are therefore not a reflection of militariCation or involvement of the military in civilian functions. $ra*ing such a correlation is erroneous. 21. )he statement attributed to the -ecretary to the 9resident about ste+s being ta/en to re+lace senior officials in the 8orthern 9rovince *ith civilians is incorrect and it gives a misleading im+ression that military +ersonnel are engaged in civil administration. All civil administration +ositions in the 8orthern 9rovince are in fact occu+ied by civilians. 22. <n addition to the substantial reduction of the military +resence in the 8orth and the East, the numbers of security barricades, road bloc/s and chec/+oints have been reduced by ## +ercent in these areas.


3ormer com%atants and detainees 24. Eith regard to the numbers concerning rehabilitees and detainees referred to as having been +rovided by the G(-. to the igh Commissioner during her visit, it may be noted that the Go-. has consistently +rovided u+dates to the !C at the regular sessions on this matter. 24. )he Go-. re,ects the assertion that access to legal re+resentatives of the detainees remains a matter of concern. Access is given not only to their legal re+resentatives but also to family members, religious dignitaries, medical +ersonnel and the <C!C. )he =agistrates also visit the detainees regularly to ascertain their *ell-being. )he +residential directives of ':th Duly, 2''6 and reissued in 2'': remain valid to date. )hese directives +rotect the rights of the arrested +erson. Every member of the armed forces and the +olice force shall assist and facilitate the 8ational uman !ights Commission of -ri .an/a 18 !C-.2 and any +erson authoriCed by the 8 !C-. in the e5ercise of its +o*ers,


duties and functions and also ensure that the fundamental rights of +ersons arrested or detained are res+ected. 2". <n addition, legal aid is +rovided by the -tate at its e5+ense for accused and a++ellants in the igh Court and the Court of A++eal res+ectively, if they are unable to retain a la*yer of their choice. )he >ar Association of -ri .an/a also assists +ersons *ith legal aid mainly in for*arding &undamental !ights +etitions to the -u+reme Court. .egal aid is also available for civil matters. 26. All detainees can challenge the la*fulness of the detention by *ay of abeas Cor+us in the igh Court or Court of A++eal and also challenge such detention in the -u+reme Court by *ay of a &undamental !ights A++lication. As regards the fundamental rights a++lications it is note*orthy that com+laints could be initiated by addressing a letter to the -u+reme Court Kthe e+istolary ,urisdiction *hich has been develo+ed by the -u+reme Court. 2:. $es+ite the tremendous advances being made in -ri .an/a, it needs to be understood that the international net*or/ of the .))E still remains active. >efore and during the *ar, this net*or/ enabled the .))E to establish lin/s through *hich it sustained terrorist activities in the country. )his included, inter alia, the +rocurement of arms and financing of terrorist activities. <n addition, they lin/ed *ith media, international agencies and nongovernmental organisations for +ro+aganda +ur+oses and financed electoral cam+aigns internationally. >y inciting )amil +o+ulations living abroad and courting influential o+inion ma/ers, the .))E net*or/ creates a distorted +icture about develo+ments in -ri .an/a that is unfortunately believed by certain foreign +oliticians and officials, and disseminated *ithin the international community. )he ground reality that +revails in -ri .an/a continues to be distorted by this misinformation to the international community. )hough the .))E has been defeated, its global net*or/ continues to garner su++ort for terrorist activities through its transnational organiCations thus see/ing to destabilise +eace and derail the reconciliation +rocess that is ta/ing +lace in -ri .an/a. <n the circumstances -ri .an/a needs to retain its anti-terrorism la* and the call for its re+eal is tantamount to a re3uest to -ri .an/a to renege on its international obligations to effectively res+ond to domestic and international terrorism. )herefore it is un,ustified to demand the re+eal of the 9revention of the )errorism Act 19)A2. <t is to be noted that the 7J and the 7-A have more stringent legislative res+onses to terrorism. 2F. )he Go-. continues to revie* the cases of sus+ects held under the 9revention of )errorism Act in order to +rosecute, submit to rehabilitation or release +ersons held in detention, u+on consideration of the evidence. 2#. Ehile the igh Commissioner asserts that there has yet to be any +rosecutions or trials for the *ar crime of child recruitment, including against former .))E cadres and former +aramilitary leaders no* serving in Government, it may be noted that -ri .an/a *as delisted from Anne5 << of the 78 -ecurity Council resolution 1612 on Children in Armed Conflict in 2'12 reflecting closure on the issue. <t may be further noted that -ri .an/a *as one of the first countries to ratify the (+tional 9rotocol to the Convention on the !ights of the Child on the <nvolvement of Children in Armed Conflict in 2'''. Conse3uently, -ri .an/a made recruitment of children for use in armed conflict a +unishable offence under the 9enal Code *ith Amendment Act. 8o. 16/2''6 of &ebruary 2''6. All "#4 .))E child combatants *ho *ere treated as victims *ere reunited *ith their families *ithin a +eriod of one year subse3uent to rehabilitation.



Attac$s on religious minorities7 human rights defenders and freedom of opinion and e8pression 4'. <t is erroneous to note that there has been a Msignificant surge in attac/s against religious minorities and incitement of violence by -inhala >uddhist nationalist grou+s.0 )here have been s+oradic incidents focusing on +laces of *orshi+ of all four religions. )hese include 1'" attac/s on indu religious +laces, of *hich #" cases *ere robberies committed by the locals. Eith regard to the re+orted attac/s, 16 relate to >uddhist, 41 to Christian/Catholic and 2' to =uslim +laces of *orshi+ during the +eriod from Dune 2''# to $ecember 2'14. (ut of the 1F2 attac/s, ,udicial in3uiries are in +rogress regarding 112, and 22 cases have been concluded. <t may be noted that out of the 1F2 incidents only 14: cases *ere re+orted to the +olice. <n all such instances +olice has ta/en ste+s to re+ort facts to =agistrates and action has been ta/en to +roduce sus+ects before =agistrates *here credible information has been available. 41. All +eo+le living in -ri .an/a en,oy freedom of religion, *hich is a constitutionally guaranteed right. )he Government of -ri .an/a remains committed to ensuring that this right is +rotected. )his is evidenced by the action ta/en to address re+orted incidents of disturbances in the recent +ast. Action has been ta/en on those *ho have contravened the la* of the land, once sufficient evidence has been gathered for +rosecution. 42. =ore broadly, <n /ee+ing *ith -ri .an/a0s societal, cultural and historical norms, regular dialogue continues to ta/e +lace at various levels to ensure interfaith harmony and understanding amongst its diverse +o+ulace. 44. Ehenever credible information relating to incidents has been made available the Go-. has ta/en a++ro+riate action. 44. )he general +ractice of the ( C ! has been to ma/e claims on the basis that credible information is available. o*ever, these claims have not been substantiated. &or instance, in the igh Commissioner0s (ral 7+date to the Council at the 24th -ession she referred to "' ne* incidents of arbitrary arrests 1re+orted bet*een 2''# and 2'142. Ehilst the Go-. in its res+onse re3uested the igh Commissioner to share that information, to date no such details have been +rovided by her (ffice *hich *ould enable the Government to res+ond. 4". )he basic +remise of engagement *ith a -tate by the ( C ! should be to +rovide that country *ith an o++ortunity to res+ond to allegations before statistics are +laced before the Council. )his is +racticed in the breach by the ( C ! to see/ to legitimiCe +re-,udged and mis+laced agendas thereby misleading the international community. Ee re,ect attem+ts to +ortray -ri .an/a as intolerant of religious minorities. Ehilst s+oradic incidents have occurred, as is the case *ith any multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, multi-religious society, they do not characteriCe the +eaceful e5istence of the different religious communities of -ri .an/a. 46. Eith regard to the allegation of +olice bloc/ing buses carrying members of families of the disa++eared as they *ere travelling to Colombo to +artici+ate in a human rights event on 14 8ovember 2'14, it may be noted that having +erused all records, the Go-. *ishes to state that no such incident has been re+orted to the 9olice. )he Go-. therefore re3uests that this section be duly corrected. 4:. Any attac/s against ,ournalists and media outlets that *ere re+orted to the 9olice have been duly investigated and facts have been re+orted to the relevant =agistrate0s Court. 4F. -uccessful +rosecution of individual +er+etrators re3uires +roof beyond reasonable doubt of all elements of the offence inclusive of the identity of the offender and in a common la* system of +rosecution that +revails in -ri .an/a unless such evidence satisfies the degree of +roof rebutting the +resum+tion of innocence, a +rosecution cannot be


launched. )he Go-. has reiterated that it has not, nor *ill hesitate to +rosecute +er+etrators *henever credible evidence is available and that domestic mechanisms inclusive of its criminal la*s are ade3uately e3ui++ed to achieve this end. 4#. <t may also be noted that there is o++ortunity for media +ersonnel to lodge a com+laint immediately through an online com+laints system launched by the -ri .an/a 9ress Council. 4'. )he Go-. re,ects the assertion that there is Ma continuing trend of attac/s on freedom of e5+ression, +eaceful assembly and association, +articularly against human rights defenders, ,ournalists and families of victimsM. )he Government of -ri .an/a is fully committed to the +rotection of human rights defenders. Ehile Go-. has re+eatedly re3uested for s+ecific information *ith regard to these allegations made regarding the +eriod of the visit of the igh Commissioner for uman !ights to -ri .an/a in August 2'14, *e note that almost 6 months later, a Doint 7rgent A++eal from the ( C ! in this regard containing unsubstantiated, uncorroborated allegations of intimidation has been received by the -ri .an/a 9ermanent =ission in Geneva only on 1'th &ebruary 2'14, less than 24 hours before the deadline set by the ( C ! for G(-. to submit comments on the igh Commissioner?s draft re+ort. Ehile this communication is receiving the high attention of the Go-., *hich *ould be res+onding to it in a timely manner, the Go-. ta/es note of the timing of the communication transmitted ,ust three *ee/s ahead of the u+coming =arch -ession of the Council *here -ri .an/a is due to be considered. 41. )he *ide range of interactions that the igh Commissioner for uman !ights and other foreign dignitaries have had *ith civil society during their visits to -ri .an/a in 2'14 and 2'14, as *ell as the active engagement of civil society from -ri .an/a in successive sessions of the Council are testimony to the vibrant nature of -ri .an/a?s civil society and the freedoms they en,oy. 42. )here have also been re+eated allegations on curtailment of media freedom and freedom of e5+ression in the country. Ehilst it is true that there remain certain unresolved cases of violence against media +ersonnel, there is no restriction +laced on *hat may be re+orted by the +ress. )he la* of evidence +lays the most crucial role, and due +rocess is re3uired for +rosecution. )his should not be inter+reted as un*illingness on the +art of the Government to bring +er+etrators to ,ustice. 44. &urther, in recent years, the s+read of social media net*or/s and online ne*s outlets has contributed to the diversity and the increased s+eed of +ro+agation of information throughout the country at large. )he *ide s+ectrum of vie*s on dis+lay in -ri .an/a is am+ly demonstrated by its +rint and electronic media, much of *hich is fiercely critical of the Government. $es+ite some of the vie*s e5+ressed being on occasion vitu+erative and targeted at individuals, it is nevertheless recogniCed that this is the +rice to be met for u+holding the democratic norms of a free and vibrant media. <t should also be noted that during the +eriod of the +resent Government, no +ress censorshi+ has been im+osed. &urther the la* relating to criminal defamation has been re+ealed by 9arliament. 44. -ri .an/a remains committed to ta/ing necessary ste+s to ensure the safety of media +ersonnel and institutions. Although no s+ecial la*s have been formulated *ith regard to media +ersonnel or institutions, any +erson *ho see/s to vindicate their rights has the o+tion of filing a &undamental !ights a++lication in the -u+reme Court, or a Erit A++lication in the Court of A++eal, or ma/ing a com+laint before the uman !ights Commission of -ri .an/a on their o*n behalf or in the +ublic interest. )he full gamut of constitutional guarantees, including effective remedies, is available to individuals or grou+s *ho *ish to canvass for the rights of media +ersonnel. 4". &urther, in order to ensure media freedom, the Government of -ri .an/a is see/ing to strengthen grievance mechanisms *hich include com+laints to 9olice, +rocessing


&undamental !ights a++lications filed in the -u+reme Court and com+laints to the 9ress Council. )he Government is also +ursuing investigations into current cases of alleged attac/s on media +ersonnel and institutions. C1 -8tra:udicial7 summary and ar%itrary $illings 46. &or reasons more fully stated belo*, the incidents referred to under this heading cannot be categoriCed as falling under alleged e5tra,udicial, summary and arbitrary /illings. 4:. )he facts as re+resented in the igh Commissioner0s re+ort on the Eeli*eriya incident are erroneous and misleading. )he follo*ing maybe highlighted in this regard% N N <t a++ears from the comments contained that the 9olice and Army disru+ted a +eaceful +rotest *hich is not the case. )he +ublic +rotest cam+aign in the Eeliveriya area alleging the contamination of *ater by a +rivate factory located there turned violent and +olice *ere com+elled to see/ the assistance of the Army to maintain la* and order. A cro*d of around 4,''' +rotestors that had surrounded the factory had attac/ed +olice officials and bloc/ed ,unctions connecting the main ColomboJandy road thereby obstructing traffic. -ome rioters attem+ted to grab the *ea+ons of the soldiers and a nearby +etrol station *as attac/ed using +etrol bombs. N )he number of fatalities is factually incorrect. )here *ere 4 civilian deaths due to the clash and several civilians also sustained in,uries. <n addition 1 +oliceman and F army officials also sustained in,uries. N Conse3uent to the Eeli*eriya incident a " member Court of <n3uiry 1Co<2 *as a++ointed by the Army Commander on '2/'F/2'14 and the said Co< submitted its re+ort to the Commander on 21/'F/2'14. )he re+ort has been referred to the $irector .egal/Chief 9rosecutor of the Army for further action. (nce the findings and recommendations of the Co< have been e5amined, the +rocedure leading to Court =artial, /no*n as the recording of -ummary of Evidence, *ill be ordered against +ersons *here a +rima facie case has been made out. N <n order to facilitate this +rocess the >rigade Commander *ho *as in charge of the Eeli*eriya area and 4 -ector Commanders have been relieved from their duties. N &rom the evidence led before the Co< it has been revealed that the Army *as de+loyed in the Eeli*eriya area at the re3uest of the 9olice and this *as ,ustifiable considering the security situation in the area. &urther, in terms of the Code of Criminal 9rocedure Act the Army is em+o*ered to ta/e a++ro+riate action in a riot situation. N )he 9olice investigations on the 4 deaths that occurred during the incident are being conducted by the Colombo Crime $ivision of the 9olice. )he =agistrate Court of Gam+aha has concluded the magisterial in3uiry into these deaths and the dossier of the in3uiry has been for*arded to the Attorney General for consideration. 4F. Eith regard to Eeli/ada +rison incident, the se3uence of events that occurred is detailed belo*% N 7+on a formal re3uest by the Commissioner General of 9risons, a team of unarmed +olice officers from the -+ecial )as/ &orce undertoo/ a search o+eration in the Eeli/ada +rison on '# 8ovember 2'12 to loo/ into re+orted +ossession of narcotics and offensive *ea+ons by the inmates. )he 9olice team *as able to discover a substantial 3uantity of narcotics during the initial search. Ehen the search *as e5tended to the *ards of the hardcore +risoners, they attac/ed the 9olice, *ho had to retreat using tear gas. )hereu+on, the inmates bro/e o+en the +rison armory and armed themselves *ith automatic assault rifles and started shooting indiscriminately. )he +rison *hich *as built during the >ritish colonial +eriod is located ad,acent to a busy high*ay and conse3uently, several motorists and +assersby *ere hit by bullets. $uring this riot some of the hardcore convicts esca+ed from custody. N )he +olice being unable to contain and control this situation called for assistance from the -ri .an/a Army. Ehen the Army arrived on the scene they observed that the shooting *as still


continuing and that several +olice officers, including the -)& Commandant had sustained serious gunshot in,uries. Assessing the situation and realiCing the need to +rotect and rescue lives of the unarmed +olice officers, +rison officials, other inmates and civilians +assing by, the Army *as com+elled to use force in order to bring the situation under control. <n the circumstances, the Go-. re,ects the categoriCation of this incident as an e5tra,udicial, summary or arbitrary /illing. 4#. Eith res+ect to the Gavuniya +rison incident, investigations conducted u+ to no* do not disclose sufficient material to attach criminal res+onsibility to any +articular +erson. Conse3uent to an order made by the igh Court ,udge of Gavuniya in case no. C> 22:"/2'11, to transfer a +risoner to a detention cam+ in the -outh, the other +rison inmates began a +rotest cam+aign and too/ hostage 4 +rison officers and continued this +rotest for more than a day. 7nable to control this siege the +rison authorities summoned the assistance of the -)& of the 9olice in order to rescue the +rison officials held as hostages. <n the course of this o+eration 2 +risoners, 4 officers of the +rison and : -)& +ersonnel *ere in,ured as a result of the attac/ launched by the +risoners. )he 2 +risoners *ho sustained in,uries during the rescue o+erations later succumbed to their in,uries. As the facts demonstrate this incident is in no *ay characteristic of e5tra,udicial, summary or arbitrary /illing. <1 "ass Gra es "'. )he remains found in the graves in =atale and =annar have been ta/en into ,udicial custody and are being sent for e5amination and carbon dating under ,udicial orders. )hus the integrity of evidence available for any +otential +rosecution has been +reserved. "1. Eith regard to the recovery of s/eletal remains in =atale, +olice investigations have revealed that there had been a cholera e+idemic in 1#4's and those *ho died had been buried in a remote corner of the =atale hos+ital +remises itself. All these as+ects are being investigated by the +olice. "2. )he =agistrate of =atale *as transferred conse3uent to com+laints made by the entirety of the >ar in =atale on irregular +ractices committed by the said =agistrate in association *ith local +olice. )his disci+linary measure of transfer has been ta/en by the Dudicial -ervice Commission in accordance *ith the +rovisions of the Constitution and the transfer has nothing *hatsoever to do *ith the handling of the mass graves0 case. "4. Eith regard to the recovery of s/eletal remains in =annar, it has been revealed that the area had been occu+ied by the .))E for 4' years, e5ce+t during the +eriod 1#FF/F# *hen it *as occu+ied by the <ndian 9eace Jee+ing &orce 1<9J&2, till the area *as liberated in 2''F, it *as not under the control of the Go-.. )he matter is +resently being investigated by the 9olice under the su+ervision of the =agistrate of =annar.


0mplementation of the recommendations of the #essons #earnt and Reconciliation Commission &##RC+
"4. 9lease find given belo* Go-. observations *ith regard to 9aragra+hs 2# to 42 of -ection <G of the !e+ort. Go-. re3uests that these +aragra+hs be corrected as +er the observations +rovided belo*% i. )he statement that Go-. has been selective in im+lementing only some of the recommendations of the ..!C is erroneous. <t is also factually incorrect to say that only 4' of the 14" recommendations Mare only +artially reflected in the 89oA0, and that Ma remaining 14' recommendations have been left unaddressed in the 89oA altogether0; ii <t may be noted that Cha+ter # of the ..!C !e+ort titled M-ummary of the 9rinci+al (bservations and !ecommendations0 contains 2F" +aragra+hs *hich is the sum


total of observations and recommendations. -everal of such recommendations are *idely similar, have common ob,ectives and outcomes, and are re+etitive. )he G(-. has identified 144 as recommendations *hich have been clustered in the ..!C 8ational 9lan of Action 189oA2 under five themes% 1i2 1ii2 1iii2 1iv2 1v2 <nternational umanitarian .a* <ssues 1': recommendations2; uman !ights 1"4 recommendations2; .and !eturn L !esettlement 124 recommendations2; !estitution/Com+ensatory !elief 1'# recommendations2; !econciliation 1"' recommendations2.

iii. )hese recommendations have been com+rehensively incor+orated into the ..!C 89oA and are no* under im+lementation. &urther, all agencies assigned *ith the im+lementation of the 89oA are instructed to consider the recommendations in their entirety and im+lement them in the s+irit in *hich they had been made in the ..!C re+ort; iv. )he recommendations itemiCed under &ootnote 14 as being only +artially reflected in the 89oA is erroneous. !ecommendations #.F1, #.#F, #.1'4, #.11: and #.144 referred to are ade3uately reflected in the 89oA and are under im+lementation. &urther, *ith regard to recommendation #.#F, Article 12 of the 1#:F Constitution sti+ulates the !ight to E3uality and Article 12142 states that no la* can be made to +revent the advancement of *omen, children or disabled +ersons. 9rotection of )he !ights of 9ersons *ith $isabilities Act 18o. 2F of 1##62 amended by Act 8o. 44 of 2''4 sti+ulates the legal +rovisions on +rotection to disabled +ersons. <t may be noted that -ri .an/a is a signatory to the Convention on the !ights of 9ersons *ith $isabilities as of 4' =arch 2'':. Eith regard to im+lementation of recommendation #.1'4, Go-. continues to *or/ closely *ith 78 agencies, <8G(s, 8G(s and civil society on infrastructure develo+ment and reconstruction, including re/construction of housing. Eith regard to !ecommendation #.11: Go-. has removed all restrictions at all +laces of religious *orshi+ in -ri .an/a. &urther, the im+lementation of the !ecommendations #.144 and #.14' are com+leted, *hile !ecommendation #.12F is under im+lementation. !ecommendation #.246 has been referred to the 9arliamentary -elect Committee for further action. )he Go-. re3uests that the above footnote and related reference 19aragra+h 4'2 be corrected to reflect the above; v. 9aragra+h 41 K (f the items referred to at &ootnote 1", #."6. #.166, #.121 and #.1:' are observations. o*ever, the gist of all observations made in Cha+ter # of the ..!C !e+ort is incor+orated into the 144 recommendations contained in the 89oA. ence it is erroneous to affirm that Mthe remaining 14' out of the ..!C0s 2F" recommendations have been left unaddressed in the 89oA altogether0. Go-. re3uests that this mis+erce+tion be corrected. vi. 9aragra+h 41 - <t is erroneous to indicate that the 89oA does not include the safeguards recommended by the ..!C to ensure the security and safety of any +erson ta/en into custody. &or e5am+le, !ecommendation #.4: itemiCed at &ootnote 16 *hich refers to the res+onsibility of the -tate to ensure the security and safety of any +erson ta/en into custody through surrender or arrest is fully covered by !ecommendations #."4, #.6:, #."4, #,"", #.":, and <nterim !ecommendation <! 11b2 in the 89oA !e+ort 1-erial 8os. 12, 14, 14, 1" and 222. &urther, in regard to recommendation #.64 *hich refers to the full im+lementation of all <nterim !ecommendations 1<!2 of ..!C +ertaining to detainees, it may be noted that the latter recommendations are reflected under <! 11a2 and <! 11b2 in the 89oA 1-erial 8os. 1: and 222. <t may be further noted that <! 11a2 and <!11b2 1i2 and 1ii2 are com+leted and <! 11b2 1iii2 is in +rogress. -imilarly, #.62 itemiCed at &ootnote 16 *hich +ertains to detainees is ade3uately covered by ..!C <! 11a2 *hich is included in the 89oA !e+ort at -erial 8o. 1:. Ehile #.66 in &ootnote 16 contains both an observation and a


recommendation, the im+lementation of the recommendation *ith regard to coo+eration and constructive engagement *ith the <C!C has been in +rogress even before the 89oA and still continues, e.g., coo+eration on detention issues and +risons visits etc. Go-. re3uests that this +aragra+h be corrected; vii. 9aragra+h 42 - Eith regard to recommendation #.46 on ta/ing immediate ste+s to ensure that allegations of abductions, enforced disa++earances and arbitrary detention, are investigated, the 89oA com+rehensively +rovides the +rogress of the im+lementation of this recommendation. "". )he im+lementation of the 89oA is a dynamic +rocess *hich evolves over time to culminate in the accom+lishment of the recommendations. )his +rocess is envisaged to incor+orate additional measures and modifications of the activities as and *hen re3uired to fulfill the res+ective recommendations. "6. -ignificant and tangible +rogress has been made by the Go-. in the reconciliation +rocess, including im+lementing the recommendations of the ..!C through the 89(A, *ith +articular reference to addressing issues of accountability, including, inter alia, issues related to disa++earances, detention, casualty figures, rehabilitation, resolution of land issues, demilitariCation, restoration of civil administration, reduction of military +resence in the 8orthern +rovince, demining, resettlement of <$9s, infrastructure and socio-economic develo+ment of the 8orthern and Eastern +rovinces, restitution and com+ensatory relief, im+lementation of )rilingual +olicy, +romotion of ethnic and cultural harmony through school curricula, livelihood develo+ment, integration of youth in reconciliation, recruitment of )amil s+ea/ing officers to the +ublic service, institutional strengthening and democratiCation including election of the 8orthern 9rovincial Council, establishment of a se+arate =inistry for .a* and (rder, strengthening of the (fficial .anguages Commission, fully functional Courts in the 8orthern 9rovince *ith the e5clusive use of the )amil language, etc., *hich have been disregarded by the igh Commissioner in her !e+ort. ":. )he igh Commissioner0s call to establish an international in3uiry mechanism to further investigate the alleged violations of < !. and < . and monitor any domestic accountability +rocess gives scant or no regard to the domestic +rocesses ongoing in -ri .an/a *ithin the frame*or/ of the ..!C 89(A, and is +oliticiCed in +remise. )he Go-. therefore, categorically re,ects this call. "F. At -ri .an/a0s 79! in 8ovember 2'12, the Go-. stated that MOsome of the recommendations fall under the ambit and sco+e of the 8 !A90 18ational 9lan of Action for the 9rotection and 9romotion of uman !ights2. Go-. *ould a++reciate if this statement is accurately reflected in 9aragra+h 41. "#. <nvestigations of this nature are com+le5 and time consuming. )he Go-. has consistently reaffirmed its commitment to investigate any allegation and *henever credible evidence emerges to ma/e out a +rima facie case, the Go-. *ill engage in +rosecuting those found res+onsible for such crimes. 6'. Eith regard to s+ecific references made in 9aragra+h 4" of the igh Commissioner0s re+ort +lease see the res+onse of the Go-. under M&ormer combatants and detainees0.


!rogress on accounta%ility issues

61. )he fact that multi+le mechanisms of accountability have been set in motion by the Go-. cannot be discounted by mere assertions of lac/ of inde+endence and credibility. )he multi+le mechanisms of accountability demonstrate the com+rehensive initiatives ta/en by the Go-. and they are in no *ay +iecemeal.


62. >y virtue of +o*ers vested in the E5ecutive under the Commission of <n3uiry Act, a 4 member Commission of <n3uiry has been a++ointed to investigate and re+ort on matters relating to involuntary disa++earances that *ere alleged to have occurred in the 8orthern and Eastern 9rovinces bet*een 1' Dune 1##' and 1# =ay 2''#. )he Commission is vested *ith a *ide mandate 1GaCette E5traordinary 8o. 1F24/42 dated 1" August 2'142. 64. )he said Commission is em+o*ered to in3uire and re+ort on several matters relating to the alleged incidents. )hey include evidence on identity of any resident of these 2 +rovinces *ho had been abducted or disa++eared from their residences, their +resent *hereabouts and identity of +ersons res+onsible for such abductions and disa++earances. )he Commission is further re3uired to re+ort on the +ossible legal measures that can be initiated against the +ersons *ho are found res+onsible for such abductions and disa++earances and measures that could be ta/en to +revent recurrence of such acts in future. )he mandate of the Commission further includes in3uiry into the obligation of the government to grant reasonable relief to the immediate family members of +ersons *ho have been so abducted or disa++eared. 64. )he Commission0s mandate is to focus on the alleged abductions or disa++earances that occurred during the +eriod 1##' to 2''# of +ersons resident in the 8orthern and Eastern +rovinces *hich *as the former theatre of conflict. <t *as s+ecifically confined to the 8orth and East as the ma,ority of allegations of disa++earances emanated from *ithin the said 9rovinces. 6". )his *ide ambit and the fact that the Commission has so far received over 14,''' com+laints establish that the Commission is an effective accountability mechanism *hich commands the credibility to hold accountable anyone *ho has been res+onsible for violations, if any, of international human rights la* and international humanitarian la* and thus, -ri .an/a +ossesses today an efficacious institution *hich cannot be discounted by any standards. 66. <n addition to the above, the Go-. has also ta/en the follo*ing measures to address accountability issues% N N N Established =ilitary Courts of <n3uiry Conducted the Enumeration of Gital Events 12'112 -et u+ a database on detainees *ith access to ne5t of /in

N -treamlined re+orting +rocedure to the 78 Eor/ing Grou+ on Enforced and <nvoluntary $isa++earances 178EGE<$2 N !egular discussions ta/e +lace bet*een the Go-. and the <C!C on e5+loring +ossible areas of coo+eration on alleged disa++earances 6:. <t is *ell recogniCed that in matters +ertaining to breaches of military disci+line, es+ecially *ith regard to violations of < ., military courts have the ,urisdiction, and the legality of these military courts have been recogniCed by many international instruments on < . including Geneva Conventions and the ague Conventions. )herefore, by virtue of the +o*ers vested in the Commander of the Army by the Army Act and under international la* he has a++ointed a Court of <n3uiry to in3uire into and investigate the alleged violations of < .. 6F. )he country-*ide Census on $eaths/<n,uries to 9ersons or 9ro+erty $amages due to conflicts since 1#F2 *ill address, inter alia, the issue of enumerating casualty figures, considering that victims *ere not confined only to the end stage but *ere affected during the entire duration. )his Census *hich *as carried out by the =inistry of 9ublic Administration and the $e+artment of Census and -tatistics *as concluded in $ecember 2'14. Eith regard to the census in the former theatre of conflict it *as carried out by


)amil-s+ea/ing +ublic officials serving in the 8orth and the East. )he Census *ill hel+ establish casualty figures *ith a level of credibility *hich is not to be found in the unsubstantiated, arbitrary figure of 4',''' referred to in the 78-G0s 9(E !e+ort on -ri .an/a *hich is discredited and re,ected by the Government of -ri .an/a. 6#. -ince many of these +ersons *ho have been re+orted as missing have ta/en refuge abroad, mainly in countries in the Eestern hemis+here, including the 7J, 7-A and Canada, the Go-. re3uested for information of such +ersons *ho had sought asylum. )his re3uest has been denied by the aforementioned countries citing la*s, regulations and +olicies of those governments and stating that they could not confirm, deny or other*ise comment on *hether +articular individuals have a++lied for or been granted asylum. )his *ould also have a bearing on the *or/ of the Commission on $isa++earances. :'. !eferences made by the igh Commissioner to alleged /illings of ,ournalists and attac/s on media institutions has been res+onded to in the section on MAttac/s on religious minorities, human rights defenders and freedom of o+inion and e5+ression0. :1. )he Go-. does not have the com+etence to comment on the content of 9aragra+h 44 as it relates to an initiative by the 8 !C-. *hich is an inde+endent entity. :2. )he ..!C is a homegro*n mechanism established *ith the ob,ective of truth see/ing and reconciliation. )he Go-. is best +laced to determine its o*n +rocesses *ith regard to truth see/ing and reconciliation. :4. Eith regard to the )rinco &ive case, the 8on -ummary in3uiry *hich is in +rogress has concluded the evidence of 14 *itnesses and affidavits of : official *itnesses have been tendered before court. 14 other *itnesses have been summoned for the ne5t date of in3uiry *hich is '6 =arch 2'14. : *itnesses are said to be living overseas and ste+s have been ta/en to trace their *hereabouts. Attem+ts to serve summons on *itnesses via e mail failed. )he +rogress u+ to no* is due to relentless efforts of the Go-. and the investigators. )he Attorney General has a++ointed a senior +rosecutor to monitor the investigations and directed the s+ecial investigating team to +ursue any clue to unearth the identity of the offenders. Even u+ to date the identity of the offenders has not been established s+ecifically. o*ever, going on the available evidence it has been established that the accused against *hom +roceedings have no* been instituted *ere around the +lace *hen the offence had been committed. 9rosecution has been instituted on the basis that those accused being la* enforcement officers, should offer a reasonable e5+lanation if an offence *as committed *hen they *ere around the +lace and if no such e5+lanation is offered a court of la* may reasonably conclude that they *ere involved in the commission of the crime, es+ecially since they *ere under a legal duty to +revent the commission any crime. )herefore, it is evident that a ,udicial +rocess is ongoing and the Go-. remains committed to bring this matter to a conclusion. :4. Eith regards to the Action Contre la &aim 1AC&2 case, a team of senior +rosecutors com+rising 6 -enior -tate Counsels and a -tate Counsel revie*ed material gathered during the investigation, in3uest and 9residential Commission of <n3uiry, +ertaining to the incident. )his team *or/s under the direct su+ervision of t*o Additional -olicitors General. -everal official *itnesses such as the Dudicial =edical (fficer and the Government Analyst 1ballistic e5+ert2 *ere intervie*ed. :". (n the instructions of the AG, further investigations are being conducted by the Criminal <nvestigation $e+artment 1C<$2 as recommended by this team of +rosecutors, *ho are es+ecially dedicated to the AC& case. )he C<$ has been instructed to investigate details of calls made using the tele+hones used by the deceased *or/ers and to intervie*, inter alia%



N all members of armed units that regained control of this area after the attac/ by the .))E *hich *as re+ulsed follo*ing t*o to three days of fighting, N relevant +eriod, family members of the deceased aid *or/ers on contacts they had during the

N AC& members *ho *ere attached to the =uttur (ffice as *ell as the )rincomalee (ffice from *here the deceased *or/ers *ere sent to =uttur. :6. )he +rogress of further investigation conducted by the C<$ is revie*ed +eriodically by the team of +rosecutors. <t must be s+ecifically stated, that in this case too, it has not been +ossible to establish the identity of the accused. )hese offences have been committed after the .))E invaded the village and all inhabitants abandoned the area on recei+t of information of the advancing .))E cadres. )he la* enforcement officers retreated as they felt that they could not engage the .))E *ho by far *ere numerically larger. A Catholic 9riest *ho testified had stated that he *as the last to leave the village and found the AC& *or/ers still remaining. &urther, he had re3uested them to leave but they had refused. )he available evidence is to the effect that the forces found the dead bodies *hen they arrived at the village after several days. <nvestigations into this incident under +revailing conditions of the conflict in that region became e5tremely difficult. )he Go-. unreservedly condemns the murder of the AC& *or/ers. )he Attorney General has stated that a +rosecution *ould be launched if any evidence is made available to establish the identification of the +er+etrators of the offence. A re3uest has been made by the Go-. through relevant di+lomatic channels for assistance to locate *itnesses abroad even on the basis of anonymity to facilitate investigations. ::. )he reference to the Channel 4 video footage *ithout 3ualification in the !e+ort leads to confusion bet*een the original video footage of 1mn 1:s in duration 18ovember 2''#2 referred to by the former -! on E5tra,udicial, -ummary, or Arbitrary E5ecutions =r. 9hili+ Alston; the second Me5tended video footage0 of "mn 2"s in length, 1$ecember 2'1'2 referred to by current -! on E5tra,udicial, -ummary, or Arbitrary E5ecutions =r Christof eyns; and the subse3uent Channel 4 documentary video M-ri .an/a% Jilling fields0 *hich continues to be +eriodically recycled and screened, *ith the tacit su++ort of elements of the dias+ora lin/ed to the former .))E, to coincide *ith the =arch sessions of the uman !ights Council *hen the resolution on -ri .an/a comes under consideration. :F. <t should be noted that reference to the footage of the latter Channel 4 documentary has not been the sub,ect of any investigation. )herefore, reference to +ronouncement on authenticity or other*ise of the latter documentary of Channel 4 *ithout distinction bet*een the different footage is erroneous and misleading. &urthermore, this footage has not been the sub,ect of investigation of the -+ecial !a++orteur on E5tra,udicial, -ummary or Arbitrary E5ecutions. )he Go-. re3uests that this mis+erce+tion be duly corrected in the !e+ort. :#. <t may be further noted that *hile the ..!C *rote to the <nde+endent )elevision 8et*or/ 1<)82, 7nited Jingdom, re3uesting a co+y of the original broadcast footage of Channel 4 and *hatever other information the 8et*or/ could share *ith the Commission including the dates, location, dates, location etc., related to the alleged incidents, <)8 did not +rovide a co+y of the original broadcast video. <n the absence of a co+y of the original broadcast footage, the ..!C used for its investigative +ur+oses M0the video as available in the +ublic internet domain00. )he Commission in its observations / recommendations on the video, inter alia, e5+ressed its M0regrets00 at M0the fact that the >roadcaster did not res+ond +ositively to the re3uest made by the Commission to +rovide more com+rehensive information00, and noted that Bgreater coo+eration by the organiCation that +rovided to the television stations these video images and by the 9roducer/>roadcaster that aired this footage is essential to establish facts of this case.00 1..!C !e+ort 8ovember 2'112.



F'. 8ot*ithstanding the lac/ of authenticity of the Channel 4 video acting on the recommendations of the ..!C, a =ilitary Court of <n3uiry has been established to in3uire into the unsubstantiated allegations contained therein *hich is in +rogress. At +resent, the Court is intervie*ing various &ield Commanders to identify the relevant formations and +otential *itnesses. )his is a tedious tas/ and once the +otential *itnesses are identified, they *ill be formally called as *itnesses. F1. Eith regard to the assertions on >alachandran, )huraira,asingham and <sai+iriya, it is categorically stated that the authenticity of the footages/+hotogra+hs referred to remain unsubstantiated and unverified. <n the circumstances, the Go-. ob,ects to the inclusion of a reference to this unverified material in the igh Commissioner0s !e+ort. F2. $ue to the lac/ of credible evidence there are no further in3uiries being conducted +ertaining to the BEhite &lagA incident. F4. )he *ife of 9rageeth E/neligoda filed a abeas Cor+us a++lication in relation to his alleged disa++earance. )his case is +ending in the =agistrate Court of omagama. A *itness that *as called to give evidence by the Counsel re+resenting =rs. E/neligoda *ho claimed to be a friend of 9rageeth E/neligoda stated that he *as to meet 9rageeth that evening, *ho had tele+honed him stating that he *ill be getting late. -ubse3uently, 9rageeth s+o/e *ith this *itness over the tele+hone and informed that he *as *ith some friends and *as on his *ay to meet the *itness. Ehile this conversation *as ta/ing +lace the *itness claims that the call got disconnected and subse3uent attem+ts to contact 9rageeth over the +hone immediately thereafter *ere unsuccessful. )his *itness *as the last +erson *ho had contact *ith 9rageeth E/neligoda. Another *itness called to give evidence by the Counsel for =rs. E/neligoda has stated of a sighting of 9rageeth in &rance. F4. &ormer Attorney General giving evidence at the said in3uiry stated that *hat *as told by him before the Committee Against )orture *as that there *as information that 9rageeth E/neligoda is living in a Eestern country and that the Go-. *as investigating that as+ect. Ehen the former Attorney General *as 3uestioned in court if he *as +ersonally a*are of the *hereabouts of 9rageeth E/neligoda, he re+lied in the negative, and he further stated that he made this statement on instructions received that the information *as being investigated. )he =agisterial in3uiry is in +rogress.

.0= .001 Conclusions = Recommendations

F". <n the light of the aforementioned +ositions contained in this res+onse, the Go-. re+udiates the conclusions and recommendations that have been erroneously arrived at in the igh Commissioner0s !e+ort as they are based on incorrect and/or unsubstantiated and e5traneous sources/material. F6. Ehile the Go-. has categorically re,ected resolution 22/1, it has nevertheless continued to ma/e significant +rogress in its o*n reconciliation +rocess, and -ri .an/a has continued to regularly u+date the Council on such +rogress. <n this conte5t, Go-. re,ects, *ithout +re,udice to its +osition of non-recognition of resolution 22/1, the igh Commissioner0s claim that most of the recommendations made in her +revious re+ort to the uman !ights Council remain unim+lemented. F:. Eith regard to the statement attributed to the Attorney General in +aragra+h 6F, the Attorney General has categorically stated that this is a misre+resentation of his +osition by a false and misleading lin/ being dra*n bet*een the lac/ of +rogress in cases such as the )rincomalee and AC& /illings, and the absence of a Gictim and Eitness +rotection mechanism. (n the contrary, he had informed the igh Commissioner during the discussion, that the absence of such a la* never +osed an im+ediment to the ,udicial



+rocess, +ointing out that *henever a com+laint of intimidation of *itnesses *as brought to the attention of authorities, ste+s *ere ta/en to ensure the securing of that testimony *ithout any let or hindrance. FF. )he tra,ectory that has emerged *ith regard to the recommendation of the igh Commissioner to the !C for the establishment of an international in3uiry mechanism reflects the +reconceived, +oliticiCed and +re,udicial agenda *hich she has relentlessly +ursued *ith regard to -ri .an/a. <t may be recalled that ,ust a *ee/ follo*ing the defeat of terrorism in -ri .an/a, on 26th =ay 2''#, at the 11th -+ecial -ession of the 78 !C on -ri .an/a, the igh Commissioner in the first instance, called for Ban inde+endent and credible international investigationA *hich *as subse3uently reiterated by her at the 11th regular session on 4rd Dune 2''#, 14th session on 41st =ay 2'1', and the 1:th -ession on 4'th =ay 2'11. <n the !e+ort of the ( C ! 1A/ !C/22/4F2 dated 11th &ebruary 2'14, she Breaffirms her long-standing call for an inde+endent and credible international investigationOA )he reference in the current re+ort that Bthe igh Commissioner remains convincedA for an Binde+endent, international in3uiryA demonstrates her +ersistent efforts against -ri .an/a. <t is +ertinent to 3uestion the factual basis for the igh Commissioner0s initial formal call to the !C for an inde+endent, international investigation and its continuation, in order that the international community not be misled. F#. )he Government of -ri .an/a reiterates its categorical re,ection of the Conclusions and !ecommendations contained in the igh Commissioner0s !e+ort, reflecting bias and is tantamount to an un*arranted interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign -tate.