We will send appropriate reply for UN Report
The controversial and biased panel report of the United Nations
Secretary General, which make false allegations against the Sri Lankan
government and its Security Forces was criticised internationally even
in fora such as the recent EU debate. People here and abroad are waiting
to see the government’s response to the blatant ‘lies’ in the report,
which depended completely on unauthenticated sources.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa participated in a religious ceremony
organised by Visakha Vidyalaya, Colombo on Friday. Similar
religious ceremonies were organised in schools islandwide to
mark the 2600th Sambuddhatva Jayanthi.
The government, which annihilated the 30-year-old scourge, LTTE
terrorism- in a well-designed military and rescue strategy, will reply
in the same manner to UNSG Ban-ki-Moon, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed
Forces President Mahinda Rajapaksa said last week.
‘‘We will reply to the United Nations Secretary General in an
appropriate manner’’, he said adding that the Darusman Report on
accountability during the final stages of the during the operation to
destroy the LTTE terrorism, is a biased document that has accused Sri
Lankan government and the military with false allegations.
The President said that he would expose these false allegations and
protect the image of the country.
He said the government would not rush to reply the Darusman Report
which was hasitly produced with highly questionable facts and figures.
‘Sri Lanka would not take it lightly because it is necessary to expose
the truth as the report is full of allegations. It is the responsibility
of the government to protect the image of the country. The Report was
based on unverified and unauthenticated facts. There are enough reliable
sources within the UN system and several other international agencies
associated with the government during the humanitarian operation to
elicit credible evidence’, he said.
President Rajapaksa told the print and electronic media editors at
the breakfast meeting at Temple Trees on Tuesday that the credibility of
the Darusman Report was highly questionable as it was an account based
on baised sources and no dangerous situation would arise for Sri Lanka
as a result of this Report.
‘There are many reasons to suspect the authenticity of the sources
that have provided the figures on civilian casualties as mentioned in
the report. The government had adopted the zero casualty policy and the
military was committed to maintain it. The Security Forces had been
sufficiently educated on Human Rights and humanitarian law to maintain
the government policy throughout the operation. Over 300,000 civilians
under LTTE terror sought relief and protection from the armed forces and
they would not have done so if the forces were killing innocent
civilians as alleged. Who is going to believe these accusations that the
army killed civilians who were fleeing’, he asked.
President Rajapaksa said that the panel which had failed to report on
the mass killings of innocent Tamils fleeing for life, by the LTTE,
designated the letter as saviours of Tamils.
The President said that the government would make a complete
assessment to reply the UNSG’s biased report and tell the world the
truth in annihilating ruthless LTTE terrorism and apprise the
government’s genuine efforts for rehabilitation of ex-LTTE cadres,
resettlement of displaced civilians, reconstruction of the North and the
East and also reconciliation. We will tell the world about our
achievements in restoring normalcy and peace the country and expose the
falsity of the controversial Darusman Report”, he said.
“There was no targeted killings of civilians during the last phase of
the humanitarian operation as alleged in certain queries.
The Government of Sri Lanka was engaged in an operation aimed to
liberate its own people from LTTE terrorists who had held them as human
shields. That was why it was called the ‘Humanitarian Operation’. Our
forces had always honoured the humanitarian norms during the operation”,
That Sri Lanka violated international humanitarian norms was a total
distortion of the actual ground situation. It was unfortunate that the
UNSG’s panel ignored the fact that TNA MP Kanagaratnam had revealed on
how the LTTE killed 600 civilians who tried to escape, the President
Commenting about India’s stand on Darusman report, the President said
: “Our relations with India have been good at all times. We will
enlighten the international community on our position on the Report. We
will give the correct picture. Russia and China, we believe, will be
President Rajapaksa, when asked to comment on Sri Lanka’s not signing
the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, said that simply
because a country was no signatory to that statute, it was not safe. He
stressed that he did not want to hide behind technicalities or legal
points in defeating the attempts to press war crimes charges against Sri
Answering a question by an editor, he said the government was
interested in as certaining the truth of the decade long conflict and
the ‘Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission’, appointed in this
regard was travelling to the four corners of the country to investigate
the root causes and make recommendations to recommend to prevent
repetition of conflicts of the same nature in future.
The President said that there was no reason to delay the release of
the LLRC report: “I think the LLRC should be allowed adequate time to
prepare a thorough report. We don’t need a flawed report like
Darusman’s,” he said. Addressing the nurses at the ceremony held to mark
the International Nurses Day, President Rajapaksa said that the
humanitarian operation by our Security Forces was totally against
terrorism and not against the Tamil people.
“If the government acted against the civilians in the North and the
East, we would not have sent the essential items such as food and
medicine to them and those in terrorist controlled areas knowing very
well that the lion’s share of the stocks would go to the LTTE,”
President said. He said that Sri Lanka was the only country which fed
even the terrorists while engaging in a humanitarian operation to
eradicate terrorism. At a meeting with Vice Chancellors of all
universities held to discuss problems in the universities, President
Mahinda Rajapaksa revealed the attempts by some elements to undermine
the 2600th Sri Sambuddhatva Jayanthi and said the time had come for all
Sri Lankans to join hands to defeat these sinister motive.
“It is the duty of all Sri Lankans to foil the attempts made to
belittle the 2600th Sri Sambuddhatva Jayanthi,” President Rajapaksa
He also said that the conspiracies were being hatched by various
anti-patriotic forces.He highlighted the need for job oriented courses
in the university system to gain access to the local and international
Terrorists on roads
“Similar to the way the government eradicated LTTE terrorism, it will
introduce a strategy to deal with the terrorists on the roads,” the
President said speaking at the ‘Road Safety Conference’ and launch of
the Decade of Road Safety in Sri Lanka.
He said it was alarming that road mishaps were the leading cause of
deaths among children and young people between the ages of 15 to 29 and
road accidents claim five or six lives daily while injuring and
disabling hundreds of youth who could lead the country forward.
“The annual cost of road traffic injuries in Sri Lanka runs to over
Rs. 10 billion, thus affecting the sustainable development of the
country. Most accidents occur due to speeding, driving under the
influence of alcohol, not using seat belts and other safety equipment
such as helmets, the use of vehicles that are old, poorly maintained and
lacking safety features. All these statistics and findings give us the
message that action should be taken to reduce road accidents. Therefore,
high priority will be paid to reduce road accidents”, he said.The
President said the government having observed the dangerous trend of
road accidents, has taken several steps to minimise its accidents. “The
road network is being developed with millions of funds being spent.
Highways are also being constructed. Due to this ongoing
infrastructure development activities, there are no poorly designed or
insufficiently maintained roads within country today. Drivers and
pedestrians too have to abide by the traffic rules and regulations so as
to minimise traffic accidents, he said