News / Asia

Summit Ends Amid Demands for War Crimes Inquiry Against Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa gestures as he speaks during a news conference at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Colombo, Nov. 17, 2013.
Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa gestures as he speaks during a news conference at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Colombo, Nov. 17, 2013.
VOA News
The three-day Commonwealth Summit, held in Sri Lanka's capital, Colombo, came to a close Sunday as human rights groups urged leaders to pressure Sri Lanka's president to investigate war crimes.

The summit was dogged by constant attention to Sri Lanka's refusal to allow international inquiries into alleged atrocities committed during and after its 27-year civil war that ended in 2009.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa has said his troops committed no abuses during or since the country's civil war against ethnic Tamils fighting for a homeland in the island's north.

Rajapaksa has also said his country's institutions are actively processing mounting complaints. "It will take time," he said during a news conference closing the summit.

The Commonwealth leaders produced a final document committing once more to the group's core values, including democracy and human rights, we well as outlining plans to push for changes to international lending that would help small nations access loans and financing for projects to help cope with the effects of climate change.

The next Commonwealth summit will be in Malta in 2015.

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Comment Sorting
by: Shiva from: Canada
November 18, 2013 11:21 AM
The Commonwealth has tarnished its image by allowing an alleged war criminal regime to host the Summit. Canadian PM Stephen Harper and the Mauritius PM Navin Ramgoolam have made strong and ethical decision to boycott the summit for lack of human rights and crimes against humanity. Whereas the Indian lame duck Manmohan Singh said due to the sentiments of Tamil Nadu he stayed away from the summit and it exposes the lack of respect for human rights and humanity by the Indian UPA regime.

The real spotlight, the bravery and the star was David Cameron who visited Jaffna with an open mind, seen firsthand the oppression, denial of human rights, attack on the civilians and the media, plight of the refugees that changed his mind to demand for an independent international credible investigation if the regime fails (he knows that the regime will fail) and conveyed privately to the President and also in public and left Sri Lanka without participating the event thereafter. It is an outstanding skills by a young vibrant leader who is from the world famous Oxford University and reminded authoritarian rulers that they are accountable for crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide and cannot escape from Justice!

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