Sunday Times (Sri Lanka)
US envoy in pow wow with TNA's Sumanthiran as US moves to bring new UN resolution against SL
The United States (US) has already commenced laying groundwork to bring a new UN Resolution against Sri Lanka during the 46th Council meeting of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, next March.
Leading the front, the US and UK are working together to introduce a fresh UN resolution after the government declared that it withdrew from the UN Resolution 30/1 which was co-sponsored by the previous ‘Good Governance’ government in 2015 after the Cabinet also upheld the decision. Thereafter, the same resolution was adopted twice as rollover resolutions numbered 34/1 and 40/1 respectively. The resolution deals with wartime accountability measures and reconciliation efforts in postwar Sri Lanka.
The latest development on this front was a sudden meeting between US ambassador to Sri Lanka Alaina B. Teplitz and Spokesperson of Tamil National Alliance ( TNA) M. A. Sumanthiran this week at the residence of the ambassador.
Mr Sumanthiran assured the support of the TNA to the initiative while highlighting that the resolution has to be modified with new inclusions as the government is involved in a new Constitution-making process to ensure that a solution to the ethnic conflict could be reached.
He had already reached out to his fellow parliamentarians from other Tamil parties such as Gajendrakumar Ponnambamal and retired Justice C.V. Wigneswaran who are of the view that Sri Lanka should be referred to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for its failures in wartime accountability since previous resolutions failed to achieve anything significant.
As a precursor to the move a new resolution against Sri Lanka, moves are underway in the diplomatic circles to facilitate the high profile visit of Rosemary A. DiCarlo, UN's UnderSecretary- General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs by early next year.
Other influential diplomats of the western countries are also kept informed of the developments behind the scenes and their inputs as well as it was announced this week that the US government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) grant of Rs 89 billion would be discontinued to Sri Lanka “due to lack of partner country engagement”.