by Upul Joseph Fernando
The website of Wimal Weerawansa, a Minister of the Government who staged a fast against UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon’s panel of experts stated recently that the report of Moon’s panel will not be compiled in disfavour of Sri Lanka (SL), and the panel will be whittled away.
It is not known whether this enunciation of his was to falsely please his followers or based on his cognizance of the secret agreement between Mahinda and Moon. No matter what , it has now become abundantly clear that the ‘quiet diplomacy’ Moon is pursuing in relation to the SL Govt. has met with failure.
pic courtesy: Inner City Press
Some time ago, Moon clearly stated that the President of SL Mahinda Rajapaksa agreed to issue visas for Moon’s panel members to come to SL, and Mahinda’s flexibility must be appreciated, while adding that this breakthrough was rendered possible after ‘long consultations’.
Moon spoke of this as though he had accomplished a great victory. But to everybody’s surprise , the SL Govt. made an announcement the very following day that visas will be issued to Moon’s panel members to visit SL only to give evidence before the Truth and reconciliation Commission (LLRC). All what Moon’s panel told in response to this was , the panel’s functions are broader than the LLRC.
Thereafter, it said that Moon’s panel shall be meeting the LLRC in a foreign country. Later on it was reported that Richard Bennet , the chief of staff of Moon’s panel will be arriving in SL to prepare the necessary groundwork prior to the visit of Moon’s panel. However , now it is clear Bennet will not be coming to SL meaning that Moon’s panel too will not arrive here.
Interestingly , Moon and his media spokesman unable to give answers to clear the cloud of doubts were in ‘hiding’ lately. It is therefore manifest from all these events that Moon is in a state of embarrassment unable to make good his diplomatic victory he so proudly and loudly announced based on his claim that he has won over Mahinda to issue visas to his panel to come to SL.
When Moon was questioned regarding the SL issue , he and his media spokesman were of the view that via the ‘quiet diplomacy’ with SL, Moon was heading for success .Moon’s declaration that the panel getting the okay for visas to come to SL is a result of the success of the ‘long consultations’, may be based on the success of the ‘quiet diplomacy’. Yet,. Moon’s ‘quiet Diplomacy’ has failed again.
Mahinda is also like Moon exploiting the war crime issue for his political ends. Moon in order to get himself appointed again as the UN Secretary General, is maneuvering through the panel designated by him pertaining to the SL war crime investigations to achieve his political objectives by making reference to the ‘quiet diplomacy’ he is supposedly following, not to offend Mahinda’s Govt. as well as China and Russia which are backing the Mahinda’s Govt. , while also seeking to please and gratify the wishes of the Western countries led by America and the International human rights Organizations.
Moon is at the same time portraying on the one hand, that he is negotiating with SL regarding the war crimes investigation in pursuit of his ‘quiet Diplomacy’ while on the other ,that he is not an enemy of the China- Russian alliance which backs the SL Govt.
It has however become very apparent based on the Wikileaks cables exposures that America is in a state of deep confusion over the stance taken by the UN in relation to SL’s war crimes : the Guardian newspaper had reported thus , ‘ the United States wanted its Diplomats at the UN Headquarters to find what Global Agency was thinking about the human rights situations in Sri Lanka’.
The Guardian newspaper , had further quoted US as saying , ‘the views and intentions of the UNSC (United Nations security Council), UN human rights and humanitarian assistance , UN’s views about appointing a special Envoy for Sri Lanka , the cable queried from the Diplomats. Next , it goes on to ask the Diplomats to find out plans and perceptions of member states towards establishment of new measures to prevent genocide , crime against humanity, war crimes and other systematic human rights abuses ; plans and intentions of member states toward proposals and resolutions supported by the US or like minded States , including those advancing Democracy
The above report clearly conveys that America is entertaining doubts and suspicions about the ‘quiet Diplomacy’ of Ban Ki Moon and his UN staff pertaining to SL. Hence, it may not be possible for Moon to masquerade in this dubious role and take refuge in camouflages for long . On the day the panel’s report is put out that may well be the day Moon too will stand out exposed. - courtesy: Daily Mirror -