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Russia criticises appointment of a UN Panel of Experts on Sri Lanka

Jun 25, 2010 6:48:48 AM - itnnews.lk

Russia has criticised the appointment of a UN Panel of Experts on Sri Lanka questioning why the opinion of the Security Council or the General Assembly was not sought in the matter.

Russia said in a statement that investigating the events that occurred in the past in Sri Lanka lies with its Government. It said that Moscow has taken note of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s decision to appoint a UN panel of experts to investigate war crimes during the period of the campaign against the Tamil Tigers. As follows from UN sources, this panel is not a fact finding or investigation mechanism, but is designed solely to advise him on accountability issues relating to alleged violations of international human rights and humanitarian law. In doing so, the UN Secretary-General as chief administrative officer of the United Nations should apparently have asked the opinion of the Security Council or the General Assembly on this matter. But this has not happened. What also makes us cautious is the fact that this decision was taken without regard to the position of a sovereign state and a member of the UN – Sri Lanka.