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Draft Statement From Non-Aligned Movement

Jul 9, 2010 3:19:19 AM - thesundayleader.lk

Member states of the Non-Aligned Movement (2009). Light blue states have observer status

The Non-Aligned Movement has been circulating a draft letter supporting Sri  Lanka in its campaign against the appointment of a UN Panel with oversight on the war. A copy of this letter was leaked to Inner City Press and is reproduced here. It is not yet known if this letter will be officially approved by NAM members which include much of the developing world, including India. Included below is the draft of the NAM statement, as of June 30th.




1. The Non Aligned Movement expresses -Its serious concern about the appointment of a Panel of Experts on Sri Lanka by the Secretary-General to advise him on the issue of accountability with regard to the alleged Violations of International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law during the
final stages of the ‘conflict in Sri Lanka.

2. As reaffirmed by the Heads of State and the Government of the Movement: during their 15th Summit in Sharm EI Sheikh, Human Rights Issues must be addressed,within the global context through a
constructive, dialogue based approach, in a fair and equal manner, with objectivity, respect for nationa1 sovereignty and territorial integrity, non interference in the internal affairs of the States, impartiality, non selectivity and transparency as the guiding principles, taking, into account, inter alia, the political particularities of each country.

3. The NAM members are seriously, concerned about the appointment of this Panel aginst the clearly expressed wishes of the country concerned and without any mandate from the Human Rights Council, Security Council or General Assembly.

4. The President of Sri Lanka has appointed a Commission of Inquiry on the 23rd of May 2010 to inquire into any violations of international norms and standards during the conflict in Sri Lanka. It is a well recognized international norm that in situations where there are allegations or breaches of International law that the country concerned should in the first instance be allowed its own investigations and to make known its findings. In this instance, the Secretary-General has appointed a panel to advise him on the modalities, applicable international standards and comparative experience with regard to accountability processes even before the Commission of Inquiry In Sri Lanka has commenced its Inquiry and without any express request from any Member State or Group or UN body or Without seeking the opinion of any Group of Member States or UN body.

5. The Non Aligned Movement expresses serious concern about the selective targeting of individual countries which it deems contrary to the founding principles of the Movement. In this context, the Movement firmly opposes the unilateral evaluation and certification of the conduct of States as a means of exerting pressure on Non Aligned countries and other developing countries.