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Credibility of HR institutes is risked by supporting dubious propaganda – Dr. Kohona

Jul 20, 2011 6:15:03 AM - itnnews.lk

Sri Lanka has said that Organizations such as Amnesty International, the Human Rights Watch and the International Crisis Group placed their credibility at risk by supporting dubious and propagandist material manufactured from suspect sources. Dr. Palitha Kohona, Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN said promoting such dubious material for whatever reason run the risk of antagonizing their support base.

Dr. Kohona was responding to the Head of Amnesty International, United Nations Office, Jose Luis Diaz on Sri Lanka’s response to allegations of human rights violations and war crimes. Dr. Kohona said without the endorsement of these groups, the Channel-4 producer Callum Mcrae’s efforts to screen the video in different places would not have succeeded.

Dr. Kohona asked Mr. Diaz and the INGOs not to take on the role of persecuting Sri Lanka without solid facts. He said because Sri Lanka valued the honour of its security forces, it did not wish to see its military forces which numbered over 200,000 honest and decent men and women and who fought a brutal terrorist group bravely and at immense cost in lives to achieve peace impugned in this manner. Dr. Kohona emphasized that Sri Lanka has always been strongly supportive of the advancement of human rights both domestically and internationally. Sri Lanka’s Permanent Mission to the UN said the Head of Amnesty International met with Dr. Kohona, to initiate a dialogue on issues relating to Sri Lanka, particularly those arising from the screening of the Channel-4 video.

This contact followed the comments made by Dr. Palitha Kohona and Deputy Permanent Representative, Ambassador Shavendra Silva, at the screening of the Channel-4 video at the UN Church Centre last month.