Sri Lanka’s core group at the 39th session of the Human Rights Council (UNHRC) which convened in Geneva yesterday have praised the government’s efforts to engage with the UN system to implement its national reconciliation action plan.

It also welcomed the commencement of work by the Office of Missing Persons (OMP). “We welcome the Government’s continued engagement with the UN system and actions to implement its National Reconciliation Action Plan and Peace building Priority Plan.

We applaud the Office on Missing Persons’ commencement of work and encourage everyone able to advance or contribute to its work to do so,” the statement delivered on behalf of Germany, Macedonia, Montenegro and the UK as members of the Sri Lanka core group stated.

“We hope the Government will establish an Office for Reparations quickly.We also welcome the return of further private land in the north and commitments to return more military occupied land to civilian ownership.”

The group however expressed reservations on the pace of progress stating that as time passes, the lack of progress in delivering key steps risks undermining the reconciliation efforts.The group pointed out specifically to the repealing of the Prevention of Terrorism Act and substituting it with an appropriate bill.

The core group is co-sponsors of the resolution 30/1, which recognises that national accountability mechanism are essential in the reconciliation process.

“Our view remains that, with determined leadership and a clear time-bound action plan, this Government can make more progress towards delivering its Council commitments, and that doing so will better position Sri Lanka and its people to enjoy a more enduring reconciliation and prosperity.We urge Sri Lanka to prioritise and drive forward the implementation of resolutions 30/1 and 34/1, before the Council next considers Sri Lanka next March.”



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